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Around the World.
Author of " Bohemian Society."
PRINTED BY JAMES MURRAY & CO.
26 & 28 Front Street West.
DEDICATED TO MY ONLY SISTER,
AROUND THE WORLD.
/^^^ O many books have been written, and descriptions given, of the scenery
,^^^ across the Rocky Mountains, that it is famiHar to nearly every one, and
even if it were not, only the pen of a Ruskin can do justice to it, so I
will leave to the imagination of my readers this magnificent scenery.
It requires six days to reach San Francisco from Toronto, and although the
scenery is grand, the journey becomes rather wearisome. I was reminded of the
story of an Englishman and American who were travelling together over the
continent. The American said to the Englishman,, " Well, what do you think of
our country, anyway ? " The Englishman pondered for a time, and at last replied,
"Well, I think \t\s large."
Remaining in San Francisco a week, it gave me an opportunity of studying
the character and habits of the "yellow-skinned strangers from the Flowery King-
dom." Accompanied by Officer Glennon, of the San Francisco Police Force,
who is most gentlemanly and obliging, we started at 7.30 o'clock to visit the
Chinese quarter of the city, which commences at the corner of Jackson and
Kearney Streets. There are about 35,000 or 40,000 Chinese in San Francisco,
occupying an area that would be insufficient for 500 people of more cleanly
habits. Chinamen will remain a race of " washee-washees " until they are
made to understand sanitary laws, and I think it would be just as easy to make a
jelly fish understand Greek. The first place visited was a Chinese barber shop.
Now, I would like all gentlemen readers to disabuse their minds of any idea of a
luxurious " shave." Not being in the habit of frequenting barber shops, or
"tonsorial parlors," the situation was unique, and I glanced around rather fear-
fully at the array of knives, and spoons, or things which looked to me like spoons.
There was a Chinese in the chair undergoing the operation, which I watched
with interest. All hair is removed from the face, ears and nose — none left
but the eyebrows. While the barber was engaged in shaving the head, I was
about to ask the officer to interfere, thinking the victim was about to be scalped ;
6 AROUND THE WORLD.
but he reassured me by saying that they only shaved about a mile and a half
back on the head, and when that Mongolian arose from the chair his face and
head were as smooth as an infant's.
The next place visited was a Chinese pawn shop. Most of my readers
have read " The Old Curiosity Shop." Put several old curiosity shops together
and you will have one Chinese pawn shop. There was wearing apparel of every
description, from the handsomely embroidered robe to the linen blouse ; pipes of
every shape, pistols, fans, Chinese weapons — which, by the way, are rather
formidable looking things. Some of them are half-circle handles with two knives
in one sheath. 1 picked up a fan and tried to open it, but discovered that it was
a sheath knife ; the lower part of the fan pulls off, leaving the upper part with a
sharp knife attached. Many of the fans carried by Chinese at night are sheath
Our next visit was to a drug store, where horned toads are preserved in
liquor and administered as medicine, deer's horns are powdered and given to
make bone and muscle. Probably the imagination works a cure for the Chinese,
as it does in many instances for the more enlightened portion of humanity. .
The next call was at one of the gambling dens, where about fifty Chinese
were gathered, eight or ten being engaged at a table playing a game not unlike
dominoes. They are inveterate gamblers, and here could be seen the same
excitement, the same interest, the same display of character, the same restless,
anxious looks that are found at fashionable gambling places. The Chinaman
who made the pools had been arrested a short time previous for murder, and
was then out on bail. He was the finest specimen of his race that I had met ;
large, well-proportioned, an intelligent face and well-shaped head. I was hoping
they would find him innocent, and even if he were guilty, as he was the only
specimen who looked like a man, why not hang some of the others as an example
and let him off.''
We went in quietly so as not to disturb their game, and I was looking over
the shoulder of one of the players when he lost, and turning, he saw me, at the
same time giving utterance to a Chinese expletive, which, the officer informed me,
referred to things more profane than sacred. They are very superstitious, and
he attributed his bad luck to a white person being near him.
Our next visit was to the opium dens. We went down several steps under-
ground, coming to a place just sufficiently high to stand in, with shelves each
side, and curled up in several of these shelves were Chinamen, indulging in their
favorite pastime, smoking opium. I remembered at one time seeing some
AROUND THE WORLD. 7
mummies from Peru, and have never seen anything since which reminded me of
them until I saw these Chinese on the shelves smoking opium. Give the
mummy a pipe and he would look equally as intelligent, and would be just as
companionable. Going through a narrow passage, we arrived at a place about as
large as a small dry goods box, directly under the pavement, where one man
alone was smoking. He evidently looked upon our visit as an intrusion, and
was altogether the most objectionable object I had yet seen. The officer spoke
to him, but was informed that he would "no speakee." Many people think the
Chinese smoke for ten or fifteen minutes, but it is a mistake. They take about
two " whiffs " and are through.
Leaving the underground dens, we ascended the steps to the outer world,
and I never remember being so thankful for fresh air. The next place of interest
was the Tong-Wah-Mew, or Joss house. There were fantastic and hideous
images, deities to whom the Chinese offer their devotions. At one side of the
room is a grate used for a peculiar purpose. Any Chinaman who owes a debt too
large for him to pay, if he goes to the Joss house and declares before all these
deities that he is really unable to pay, his creditor takes the piece of paper upon
which the sum is written and throws it in this grate, and the debt is cancelled.
If that were the custom among Europeans the grates would be kept constantly
At last we are going to a house that is the " correct " place to visit, that is,
to the Chinese restaurant. Every one, nearly, who visits San Francisco, goes to
this establishment. This is the most cleanly place one will find in all the
Chinese quarter. Many people think they are visiting the Chinese part of the
city, and are taken to the restaurant, the theatre and the Joss house, and go
away satisfied that they know something about the people ; but to know any-
thing of their habits one must go underground. The restaurant is very nicely
fitted up, tables well laid, clean damask and quaint little dishes, tiny tea cups that
contain about three tablespoonfuls of tea. We ordered tea, and they brought
something that looked a little like it, and with it some pumpkin seeds in a tiny
dish, and some other things which I did not investigate. There is some very
beautiful carving in this room, and the chairs are handsomely embroidered in
The next and last place we visited was the theatre, and by far the most
interesting, if one can call anything interesting that they do not understand. We
were given the seat of honor, that is, on the stage. There are no wings, or
flies, or curtains of any kind in a Chinese theatre. The stage is raised a little
8 AROUND THE WORLD.
from the floor, and the musicians sit on the stage near the actors. Any thing
more hideous than the noises of these instruments can not be imagined. There
is nothing approaching a tune, but simply a screech and sawing. There were no
cats in the neighborhood, and I attributed it to the reason that they had heard
the orchestra of the theatre, and found something that could make night more
hideous than they.
The actors are men — no women are on the stage. A Chinese was dressed
as a woman, and spoke, or screeched, in a high falsetto, in imitation of a woman's
The dresses were very pretty. The principal actor — shades of Garrick ! —
wore a dress of some bright color, with tiny little mirrors about the size of twenty
cent pieces, all over it. The effect was rather pretty.
The audience was composed principally of men — all Chinese — who sat with
their hats on. There is no applause, not the faintest, and I thought one of the
actors deserved some applause, as he had been killed, was carried off the stage,
and coolly walked back in the next act, when the same killing process was gone
through again. The Chinese play sometimes lasts for six months before the
drama is ended. Imagine going every night for six months to find out how the
plot ended ! One hour was quite long enough for me, and anything more
fantastic I have never witnessed. There is a supper served for the principal
actors after the theatre is closed, and the officer took me to a room where a
young Chinaman was busily engaged in dressing the entrails of a dog for supper.
I do not think that even the most pressing invitation could have induced me to
remain to share the repast. I am very fond of dogs, but I prefer them intact.
I dreamed of dogs that night, dogs brown, dogs white, dogs black, dogs fried
and dogs broiled.
There are about 600 Chinese prostitutes in San Francisco. The money
which is procured from their mode of life goes to their owner, as all these women
are bought and sold. They are not allowed to appropriate any of it.
They live in one row of houses. The rooms look like small boxes with a
little grating before the window, before which these women sit. Some of them
have rather pretty faces, but as a rule they are repulsive, being almost entirely
lacking in expression.
I will say nothing about the city of San Francisco, as descriptions of it
are written and re-written, but will go on to countries of which less is known by
my own country people.
.<— > m
N the 22nd of November I sailed for Australia, in the steamship
" Mariposa," Commander Capt. Haywood, and arrived in Honolulu,
capital of the Sandwich Islands, November 29th. The Hawaiian, or
Sandwich Islands, lie in the North Pacific about 2,080 miles from San Francisco.
There are twelve islands in the group, eight of which are inhabited, and the area
of the whole is 6,000 square miles.
The first thing which attracts the attention of travellers on approaching
Honolulu is the number of extinct volcanoes, which rear their heads and look like
granite giants, the most conspicuous being called Diamond Head. It rises
directly from the water's edge, with sides seamed and scarred by the lava which
had boiled and burst over it. The water is a beautiful emerald green ; the
intensity of its color is caused by a coral reel that runs out nearly a mile. It is
very beautiful, but most dangerous to ships. Approaching nearer, we catch
glimpses of cocoanut palms, and a cottage nestling here and there among the
trees, with the lofty serrated mountains in the background.
At last the ship arrives at the wharf, and we see hundreds of native men
and women. The women are splendidly formed, with magnificent physiques,
and, since the advent of civilization, the women dress in loose robes not unlike
our " Mother Hubbard." I took great pleasure in watching them, their graceful
movements wholly free and untrammelled, their flowing dresses showing the
contour of their limbs, the poise of the head, and I thought, " Here is a model
for a painter's skill," and I could not help contrasting them in my mind with the
pinched waist, flat chest, and absurd wibble-wobble of many fashionable women.
The native women of the Sandwich Islands ride astride their horses. It rather
takes one's breath away at first to see women riding in this way, but when one
stops to consider a moment, it is only that we have not been accustomed to
Honolulu contains a population of about fifteen thousand, and as it is a toy
kingdom, it is under the control of His Majesty King Kalakaua, descendant of the
king who a hundred years ago killed and ate Captain Cook, the greatest mariner
Britain ever knew. The court consists of His Majesty Kalakaua, Her Majesty
the Queen, Her Royal Highness the Princess Liliuokalani, and Her Royal
Highness Victoria- Kawekieu-Lunalilo-KalaninuiaJiilapalapa. My readers will
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have no difficulty in pronouncing these names ; I have only given a few of the
royal court names. On the day of our arrival in Honolulu the king's birth-day
was being celebrated — his fiftieth year. The palace is a very picturesque build-
ing from the exterior, and with red flags flying and native soldiers stationed at
the door, the scene was almost barbaric. But the interior of .the palace is by no
means barbaric; it is very elegant; the entrance hall is large, with winding stairs,
handsome gasaliers, beautifully carved tables and large vases of tropical foliage.
It requires the .same amount of formality to be presented to His Majesty as is
usual in approaching all royal personages. The United States Consul and Mr.
Julian Thomas, the well known writer, endeavored to get an interview on my
behalf with His Most Gracious Majesty, King Kalakaua, but discovered that the
king was too intoxicated to receive us. I will not comment upon this, as my
acquaintance with kings has been somewhat limited ; I may not be a competent
judge of what is considered correct in the deportment of kingly personages.
The residences in Honolulu are quaint in the extreme, but the tropical foliage,
waving palms, brilliant flowers, all form a picture to make one forget the absence
of architectural beauty. I went into a store where they sell "curios," and told
the proprietor to give me something that I could carry easily, and he handed me
a native dress. It could, certainly, be carried easily, for it consisted of a narrow
band about an inch in width, with strings of dried grass attached. That is the
native dress in the. interior, before the appearance of the missionary and Mother
The fruits of the Hawaiian Islands are alligator pears, bananas, cherimozas,
China oranges, cocoanuts, custard apples, dates, Eugenie figs, garcinia, grapes,
guavas, Java plums, limes, litchi, loquats, mangoes, mulberries, muskmelons,
ohias, oranges, papias, peaches, pine apples, pomegranates, rose apples, sapoto
pears, sour sop, Spanish cherries, strawberries, tamarinds, water lemons, water-
melons, whampee. The alligator pear makes an excellent salad. There is one
thing that strikes a stranger very forcibly in Honolulu, that is the different nation-
alities — natives, Chinese, Yankees, Hindoos, Frenchmen, Germans, Spaniards,
Britons ; all form a cosmopolitan gathering that would be difficult to find else-
There are a great number of lepers in the Sandwich Islands, but every pre-
caution is taken to prevent the spread of the terrible disease. There is an island
plainly visible from the ship before reaching Honolulu, where the poor wretches
are taken ; they are cut off from the world, living alone, waiting for death to end
AROUND THE WORLD. ii
Leprosy is said to have been introduced from Asia into the Sandwich Islands
more than half a century ago, and spread with such rapidity that the government
was compelled to devise some means to separate the sufferers from the rest of
the population. They selected, for this purpose, one of the most secluded of the
Sandwich Islands — the island of Molokai. Thither the lepers are transported
from the other Hawaiian Islands. In the past fifteen years 2,500 have been
transported. The condition of these poor people was pitiable indeed, but fifteen
years ago a young Belgian priest. Father Damien de Veuster, who had been
sent on a mission to Honolulu, hearing of the condition of these people, volun-
teered to live among them, and, if possible, alleviate their distress. He has
built thatched huts and cottages, a church, schools and hospitals, with the aid of
the lepers. For years he worked alone and unaided at his strange task, but two
years ago another priest joined him. Father Damien escaped all contagion from
the disease until about three years ago, when it made its appearance, and his
doom was therefore sealed, but he is still able to continue his work. The follow-
ing is an extract from a letter written by Father Damien to a friend in England :
''Kalawao, Molokai, Nov. 8, i8-jy.
" We continue our bathing, but only in warm water, the supply of Japanese
medicine being now all out, though we hope to receive a new invoice; such is the
promise of our new board of health. I should be very sorry if we should be
deprived of it definitely. The disease on me works more now at the exteriors,
and does not give me so much pain in the limbs. In regard to a cure of this our
incurable disease, I leave that in the hands of Almighty God, who knows better
than I do what is best for our sanctification during our short stay in this world.
The Blessed Virgin, our common Mother, in whose hands I have entrusted my
health from the day I put my feet in this asylum of death, could very easily
obtain me a miracle, but she too knows better than I do what may shorten my
road to heaven. And for myself I feel very happy and well pleased of my lot.
" Since the change of our government, I have received a great number of
lepers, and probably a great addition is to follow. I have here under my special
guardianship fifty boys, who occupy pretty well all my spare time. The brother
with me is greatly occupied dressing sores and other druggist's occupations.
Our two churches are pretty well crowded on Sundays, and every morning and
evening a good number assist at our divine worship. I will have to bury this
afternoon two old lepers in one grave ! With the assurance of my esteem, etc.
— J. Damien de Veuster."
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Surely the age of heroism and martyrs is not dead. We read of men who
fell in battle, men who have heroically faced death, but to my mind Father
Damien is the hero of heroes. Going of his own free will to a colony where
death is the presiding genius, to lead a lonely, solitary life, knowing full well that
he too must fall a victim to the horrible disease ; then after years of toil and self-
sacrifice, he finding his doom is sealed, without a murmur patiently waits the death
which is inevitable. Who will say there is no good in human nature ? Who will
say that in this age there are no martyrs ?
Nature in its terrible mood is to be seen in the volcanoes of the Hawaiian
Islands. Kilauea and Mauna Loa are the largest. Kilauea, whose base is at a
height of nearly 4,600 feet, on the flank of Mauna Loa, has the appearance of a
great pit. The pit is nine miles in circumference ; there are signs of volcanic
activity throughout its whole depth ; great eruptions occur at intervals. The
ascent of Mauna Loa has been dispelled of some of its terrors by the frequent
excursions made by travellers during the past three years. The crater, Mo-kua-
weo-weo, is on the summit of Mauna Loa. Action began August 9th, 1872, and
has since been almost incessant. In the vicinity of Kilauea the army of Keoua
met its terrible destruction. Some of the natives who were contemporary with
Keoua say that while they encamped two days and three nights at the crater of
Kilauea, there were repeated eruptions and sending up of cinders and stones.
They set forward on the third day toward Kan. The earth trembled and shook
under their feet, a dense cloud arose from the immense crater, lightning and
thunder burst forth over their heads and darkness covered them, and a shower of
cinders thrown high from the crater descended on the region round about, and
great numbers of Keoua's men were killed and . were found there many days
afterward apparently unchanged, and were at first mistaken for a living company.
In Kohala there is the ruin of the celebrated heathen temple, where human
sacrifices were made to appease the wrath of the deities. Human lives were
sacrificed to avert catastrophes of all kinds; the victims were allowed to remain two
days on the altar ; the third day the flesh was stripped from the bones, and flesh
and bones carried to the sea and washed ; they were then carried back to the
temple, the bones tied up in bundles and the flesh burned at the back of the
altars. Not long ago one of the volcanoes burst forth, pouring its lava over the
mountain side ; it ran down within a mile of the town of Hilo ; the inhabitants
were alarmed and some of the people began removing the machinery from their
mills and factories, when some one suggested that they should send for the Prin-
cess Ruth, sister of the present king. She arrived and proceeded to throw a
AROUND THE WORLD. 13
black cat, a white pig and some coins into the crater, at the same time muttering
incantations, when the lava ceased, and the natives attributed it to her occult
powers. In olden times a human life would have been sacrificed to appease
the wrath of the angry gods.
There is a very rare bird called the "Oo," which produces two feathers only.
These are sold for one hundred and fifty dollars each to decorate the robes of the
royal family ; the wealthy native women wear them around their necks in the
street. While still looking for " curios," I was shown these feathers ; to my
inexperienced eyes they appeared anything but beautiful, but looked as though
they could be used successfully to clean lamp chimneys ; they were round and
like the things on wire used for that purpose.
There are a great many native dancing girls who assist in the amusement of
all gala days. I must not forget to mention the hotel in Honolulu ; it is handsomely
fitted up with every modern convenience, and if it were not for the tropical trees
and foliage by which it is surrounded, one would imagine one's self in an
One of the most beautiful places to visit in all Hawaii is the mountain
called the Pali, one of the most remarkable wonders of nature. It is six miles
from Honolulu, the road ascending all the way. The mountains rise from the
sea level to a height of 4,000 feet; they do not descend in sober mountain fashion,
but are cleft in two, one half left standing, the other gone, no one knows whither.
It is nowhere less than 800 feet, in many places over 2,000 feet deep; below are
plains and hills. The valley below is classic ground in Hawaiian history ; there
was fought the last of seven decisive battles by Kamehameha, victories that
made him sole monarch and established his dynasty. On the rocky slopes of
these impregnable mountains the natives, with spears and clubs, resisted the
hordes of the invaders, fighting vainly, and at last were driven headlong over the
Pali. It is a lonely and romantic spot, worthy of the death struggle of brave and
knightly warrior chiefsof ancient times.
I drove up to the Pali and it seemed like a beautiful dream. On first start-
ing we drove through an avenue of palms ; further on mountains on either side
covered with green moss, the tops enveloped in clouds of mist, the mist falling
around us in little showers of rain, the sun shining brilliantly, the changing hues
of the foliage, while between us and the highest mountain was a beautiful rain-
bow, which remained there like a halo. Anything more exquisite I never expect
to see again. We were obliged to leave our carriage when about three-quarters
the way to the top, as the wind blows at the summit with such force that it is
14 AROUND THE WORLD.
unsafe to take a carriage to the top. The way is cut out like an Alpine pass to allow
people to walk, and has an iron rail by which to hold one's self. I never imagined
the wind could blow with such force as it does at this place ; it is as though the
spirits from the dead warriors who lost their lives here were roused and
shrieking their fury at the immovable rocks.
FTER leaving the Sandwich Islands, there was nothing more of interest
to be seen before reaching the Samoa group, one of the Navigator
Islands. Leaving Honolulu the 29th November, with nothing but the
ocean to look upon, nothing but " water, water everywhere," one naturally turned
to one's fellow-passengers to try and discover if they possessed any marked
peculiarities, any eccentricities of character — in fact anything that would place
them above the commonplace, and I found to my delight that there were a
number of literary people on board, among them Dr. Julian Thomas,
who is certainly neither dull nor commonplace. He writes under the nom
de plume of " The Vagabond," and is well known all over the literary world
as the best descriptive writer in Australia. The nom de plume was a well
chosen one, for he is Bohemianism personified — a Virginian of English
descent, a champion of the " Lost Cause," a journalist in London and New
York, a soldier of fortune in South America, a wanderer in the South
Seas. Some years back he started his successful career on the most enter-
prising journal in the British colonies, the Melbourne Argus. Adopting
the tactics of Mr. James Greenwood of the Pall Mall Gazette, Dr. Thomas
assumed the characters of an inmate of the Benevolent Asylum and Model Lodg-
ing House, a hospital patient and hospital clerk, and a warder in lunatic asylums.
He wrote on all sorts of social subjects, and has effected many reforms with his
pen. Then in behalf of the Melbourne Argus he visited nearly every country
in the world. He was in New Caledonia during the native war of 1878. After-
wards he went to Fiji, China, Japan, and across to British Columbia, and on
returning to Australia received orders to again visit the islands of the Western
Pacific. From New Caledonia he sailed through the New Hebrides to New
Guinea. He was returning by the " Mariposa" from a trip to England, to describe
for the Argus the recent Colonial Exhibition. Dr. Thomas came by the
Canadian Pacific route across the continent. Many of his writings are pub-
lished in book form, the latest work, " Cannibals and Convicts," a record of part of
his experience in the South Seas. An article appears weekly in the Argus
from his pen, to me the most interesting part of the paper.
It was my fortune to meet on the "Mariposa" a gentleman to whom I had a
letter of introduction, Mr. G. W. Griffin, United States Consul for Sydney,
1 6 AROUND THE WORLD.
New South Wales. He has written many excellent works, among them,
"Danish Days," "Studies in Literature," "Memoir of Col. C. S. Todd," "A
Visit to Stratford-on-Avon and Prenticiana." His life has been an event-
ful one, full of romance, interest and excitement. Educated for the law,
he soon showed preference for literary work. At that time the Louisville Journal
was edited by the most popular newspaper-writing American, Mr. George D.
, Prentice ; Mr. Griffin contributed to this paper, and his articles brought him under
the notice of General Grant. Charmed with the ability displayed in his writings.
Gen. Grant sent for Mr. Griffin one day, and asked him if he would go to Geneva as
representative of his country. Mr. Griffin assented and was about to start, when
the President altered his purpose and sent him instead to Copenhagen, princi-
pally that he might be in the city in which Grant's sister resided. Mr. Griffin
was the bearer of a letter of introduction from the poet Longfellow to Prof Geo.
Stephens. Prof. Stephens is famous as the discoverer of the complete Runic
Alphabet, as an antiquary of vast research, and as the possessor of the most
extensive private collection of books in the world, a library of 120,000 volumes.
The other heart that opened to receive Mr. Griffin had been cast in a very
different mould ; it was that of the Danish story teller, Hans Christian Andersen,
the friend of little folks all the world over. The weaver of fairy tales more
beautiful than dreams soon spun a silken web around the home of the American
Consul. Mr. Griffin was Consul at Samoa, where he was mobbed by the filibusters
in 1877. Admiral Aube, who was then a captain in the French Navy, restored
Mr. Griffin to power, and secured for him the protection of the native Govern-
ment. Upon the arrival of the "Le Seingnelay" at Tahiti, the Governor-General
there disapproving of the proceedings of the French ambassador, took his ship from
him and sent him to Paris for trial by court-martial. When Commander Aube
reached Paris, instead of being tried by court-martial, he was presented with the
thanks and gratitude of the American nation for his services to Mr. Griffin, and
promoted to the rank of Commodore. At a later period he was made an Admiral,
and he is now Secretary of the French Navy. I can not attempt to give the
many interesting events in Mr. Griffin's life — they alone would make a book ; but
I can assure my readers that it was a pleasure to meet a man of his versatile
talents, and I am indebted to him for a thousand kindnesses.
Among the passengers was Mr. James Mills, Managing Director of the
Union Steamship Co., of New Zealand. There is a fleet of thirty-five vessels
which run to various points in New Zealand, Australia, the Pacific Islands, and
to San Francisco. These ships are luxuriously fitted up. Archibald Forbes says.
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in a letter to the. Nineteenth Century : "The 'Wairarapa' of the Union Company
of New Zealand, is, to ray thinking, the most beautifully decorated ship in the
world, being spacious, lofty and well ventilated. I have not seen an. Atlantic
liner whose state-room accommodation is equal in completeness, prettiness and
comfort to that which the Australian voyager will find on some of the best of the
Union Company steamers— ' Wairarapa,' for instance, or the ' Manapouri.' " I can
speak too for the beauty of these ships, having had the pleasure of being on one of
them while in Auckland, New Zealand.
Mr. Whitson, Secretary of the Union Steamship Co., was also among the
number of literary people, he having written a work on New Zealand. During the
voyage he delivered a lecture on humorous English poets, which was excellently
written and delivered. Among the other pleasant passengers from New
Zealand was Mr. W. Davenish Meares, of Christchurch, New Zealand, who is the
best recounter of stories I have ever seen. Every conversation started sug-
gested a story to his mind, and always beginning with " that reminds me," we
were prepared for something good. There were many other pleasant passengers,
but lack of space prevents me introducing them to my readers.
E crossed the Equator Saturday, December 3rd, about eight o'clock
a.m. Arrived at Tutueillo, Samoa Island, December 8th, where
we made a short stay. We jumped from Friday, December nth,
to Sunday, 13th, losing Saturday. In going from east to west there is a day
lost, which can only be regained by going from west to east again, when I will
pick up the day dropped out of my life by having two Thursdays in succession,
or two Fridays, two days of some kind, together. The Captain kindly explained
this to me, which I would take much pleasure in explaining to my readers, if it
were not for the kindly feeling I have towards the Captain. My explanation
might produce softening of the brain or premature grey hairs.
We arrived at Auckland, New Zealand, December 1 3th, where we made
quite a lengthy stay. Auckland is a fine city, with wide streets, well paved. We
took a drive to Mount Eden, from the summit of which there is a magnificent
view. Mr. Griffin was Consul at Auckland for some time, and during our stay
there he introduced me to Prince Paul, one of the Maori chiefs whom he knew
during his Consulship in New Zealand. To describe this extraordinary-looking
person would be almost impossible. His face was tattooed out of all semblance
to a human face. Our conversation was a very animated one ; it consisted of
smiles, and bows, and "oh, eh, ah's," more smiles, grins and bows, and we parted,
mutually pleased — at the parting.
Mr. Griffin took Dr. O'Neil, Miss O'Neil, of New South Wales, and myself,
to call upon Mr. and Mrs. Firth and their charming daughters. Their residence
is a very beautiful one in Auckland, handsome grounds, rare plants and trees.
While walking in the grounds Mrs. Firth showed us a cave in the earth in which
could be plainly seen the bones of dead and gone Maories. The ground upon
which Mr. Firth's house stands, with hundreds of acres besides, was given him by
the Maories, It is said that at one time he saved the life of a Maori chief, who
repaid him by giving him a large amount of land, on condition that he should
live upon it. While there we were shown some very beautiful paintings of that
most magnificent of nature's wonders — the pink and white terraces that were
destroyed by the volcano of the present year. -Mrs. Firth told me she heard- the
reports like small cannon being fired, and thought the ships in the port were
firing. The mountain, which had lain asleep for ages, at last awoke, and in its
AROUND THE WORLD. 19
fury destroyed one of the most beautiful of all of nature's handiwork. Thousands
of tourists visited the place yearly to see these beautiful terraces, and now not a
On the evening of Friday, 17th December, after having been twenty-five
days at sea, we were able to discern the electric light on the Australian coast, a
distance of sixty miles. It is the most powerful electric light in the world. Such
a hearty cheer as went up when it was sighted. Seen from that distance it
looked like a faint red flame in the sky, a beacon light welcoming the Australians
back to their native shores, and, I fancied, even sending forth a gleam of welcome
to me, a stranger in a strange land. Any feeling of loneliness which I felt was
at once dispelled by the hearty hand clasps from many of the passengers,
welcoming me to their native country. On the morning of the i8th we slowly
steamed into the harbor, which the New South Wales people are justly proud of,
as there is only one other harbor in the world that can compare with it in beauty,
and that is at Rio-de-Janeiro. While going slowly up the harbor I looked for the
first time upon Australian shores, upon the world which was the first to raise its
head above the waters, the land of gold, of promise, the home of the kangaroo and
the swan, the land of flowers and palms, the seat of the new empire founded by
the Anglo-Saxons under the Southern Cross.
Ij^^HE entrance to Sydney harbor is alone worth the journey of 13,000
ly miles. To say that it is beautiful but faintly expresses it. It is
magnificent. On entering the harbor there are two barren rocks, or
cliffs, which seem to guard the entrance, and are called " The Heads," or
" Sydney Heads." The waters dash around the base of these rocks in great
fury during rough weather, but as soon as the ship passes through the entrance,
a fairy scene is opened to the eye. There are innumerable bays which wind and
turn, disclosing a thousand beauties, and as the vessel moves slowly along the
waters, the beauty seems almost unreal, and the ship an enchanted one ; but the
dream of enchantment is ended when we arrive at the dock, and one is brought
suddenly from the world of dreams to one of reality. After saying " good-bye"
to my fellow passengers, many with whom I was sorry to part, I took a carriage
and proceeded to the hotel, or club, in Sydney. The first thing which struck me
as being wholly unlike America was the manner in which the hotels are con-
ducted. Travellers will not find here a long " menu " from which to chcJose a
dinner. There is an utter absence of " side dishes," or " made dishes," and at
first it is rather startling, and the thought of starvation enters one's mind ; but 1
will reassure my readers by telling them that if they have unwearied patience
and are not troubled with bashfulness, and will resign themselves to the thought
of growing old during the time which elapses from giving the order until it is
filled, they will probably arise from the table — well, at least, not hungry. The
least said about the cooking in Australia the better. It is neither English,
American, German or French. Ye gods ! imagine a French epicure at an
Sydney is a fine city, with a population of 300,000. The University is the
handsomest and most imposing building in any of the colonies, and cost $750,000.
It has a magnificent hall, in size equal to that of Westminster. There are six
parks and beautiful botanical gardens, with tropical foliage. The Government
House is a handsome building, occupied by the present Governor-General, Lord
Carrington. The streets are rather narrow, but there is an appearance of
solidity and wealth about the buildings, and one would naturally suppose they
would look solid, as the walls are, in many instances, four feet in thickness ; the
partitions are also the same thickness. They could rightly be said to be " built
AROUND THE WORLD. it
upon a rock," for the earth, or soil, or sand, owing to the absence of rain, is
baked so hard that it is difficult to distinguish it from rock. There are some
very beautiful buildings in Sydney, built of stone that somewhat resembles Ohio
free-stone. But imagine, reader, stone buildings and stone pavements, and the
heat at 153° ! I looked longingly at the numerous yachts in the bay, but, upon
further consideration, thought I would submit to the heat and dust, as there is no
place in the world where there are as many sharks as in Sydney Harbor, and if a
boat capsizes there is little chance of being saved. There are many instances
where unfortunate people have been seized by these hideous monsters. While
in Sydney, in one day there were eleven sharks caught, and all lying on the
beach. The impression Sydney made upon my mind is a strange one — it is of a
city that was slowly being buried, as though the dust from some modern Vesuvius
was accumulating and settling like a pall over its buildings and streets.
New South Wales was named by Captain Cook during his first voyage of
discovery in 1770. The great English navigator fancied he saw a resemblance
between the south of Australia and Wales, but the division of the territory into
five governing centres has limited its application to the part occupied by the
older colony. New South Wales is situated on the south-east coast of Australia,
between the parellels of 28° and 37° south latitude, and the 141st and 154th meridian
of east longitude. This colony is more than three and a half times the size of
the island of Great Britain. It will give my readers an idea of the magnitude of
this vast country when one colony alone is more than three and a half times the
size of Great Britain.
i|^UMEROUS descriptions have been given by travellers and explorers
of the personal appearance of the aborigines of Australia, and the
accounts vary considerably. The different tribes vary in color, as is
found in all the various races in the continent of Europe. The shades vary, from
a dark chocolate brown to the dusky black of the negro. The head is well
shaped ; they have large, soft, lustrous eyes; the body of medium size. The face
is not agreeable to look upon. The under jaw is large ; the lips thick and heavy.
In their natural condition they are found almost entirely dependent on the sup-
plies of the forest to satisfy their daily wants, and when these become scarce
through drought, they are reduced to the verge of starvation. Stone appears to
be the only material used for making axes and tomahawks, and although living
in a land noted for the richness of its earth treasures, they do not know the use
of metals. They are much inferior in intelligence to the Maories of New
Zealand ; in fact, I think they are the lowest in intelligence of any of the human
race. They are very expert in the use of the spear, which they throw with
unerring precision over one hundred yards. It is a most formidable instrument,
about twelve feet in length, with a long blade, which is often jagged like a set of
shark's teeth. They use the " woomarah," a string which from the part held by
the hand traverses the spear to the butt end, which the string is passed over and
brought back tight to the hand. This aids the propulsion, giving great force and
greater velocity. They are very skilful in hurling the boomerang, which in the
air will gyrate for a considerable distance, turn round at a certain angle —
uncertain, as the beholder may deem it — and will unerringly, and with great force,
strike the object at which they aim. In some parts of the country the boys and
girls are betrothed when born, that is, the boys of one tribe are betrothed to the
girls of another, and at puberty, the lubras — girls — are claimed by the " marked "
young men. All the lubras are deficient of the two joints of the fore finger of
the left hand, which at three months old is taken off by a hair ligature, being
daily tightened till the joint drops off. When the joint is buried, the aborigines
look upon it as a distinct person, which will become another native. The
women are passionately fond of their children. They carry them on their backs,
astride their shoulders ; then they hold on to the mother's hair, or on the hip. It
is amusing to see the mothers stoop down, and how naturally mere infants climb
AROUND THE WORLD. 23
up and perch themselves on their mothers' shoulders. The young men, to
denote them as marriageable, have marks scored on the shoulder or other parts
of the body, or a front tooth knocked out. When the young men arrive at
manhood the tribe assembles in some retired spot for a grand "corroboree," and
with great festivities proceed to mark them. Many of the tribes practice
circumcision, and they are all afraid of an evil spirit, which they term " Browl."
Before retiring at night they make a light and hunt about, calling out "Browl,"
" Browl." Their mode of burial differs in different tribes. In the north the
body is bound up in paper bark, smoked and placed in the branches of the trees,
from eight to ten feet from the ground. It is left there during the wet season
until the flesh is rotted. The friends then return and make a fire under the
bones, which are collected and carried away. They never cultivate the ground,
but are nomadic in their habits, and it is difficult to understand how they exist,
with no clothing and no shelter beyond that of a bark placed against a log.
They eat roots, grubs, worms, the larvae of ants, land crabs found in the water
holes, and fish. They are partial to snakes, lizards, and the iguana. They readily
raise fire by rapidly turning round between the palms of the hands a stick
sharpened to a point and inserted into a flat piece of hard wood, around which
are dried leaves. The dress of the men consists of a girdle about an inch wide ;
the women adopt the same severely plain style.
Men, women and children all wear a stick, about six inches in length,
passed through the centre cartilage of the nose. In Queensland and the Northern
Territory, in any settlement, one can see daily a dusky daughter of Eve lying
prone on her face, while another happy child of nature is minutely investigating
her sister's head, exactly as is the habit of the monkey, and woe to any unlucky
parasite, should it not elude pursuit, for it literally becomes mince-meat ! Many
of the young girls just coming to womanhood are very pretty, are symmetrically
poised, and walk majestically, their limbs never being trammelled with fashionable
habiliments. A sable belle of Palmerston, who numbers fifteen summers, is very
much admired, as she is not altogether deficient in accomplishments. In the
most winning way she says, " Give me a banana," which being placed on the
ground, she picks up with the great and second toe of either foot, passes it to
her mouth, and proceeds to eat with the greatest ease. Many of the blacks of
Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia, are at the present
time cannibals. A missionary informed me that at Moreton Bay, a boy having
died, several men gathered round the body, removed the head and thick outer
skin, which was rolled upon a stake and dried over a slow fire. During this
24 AROUND THE WORLD.
horrible ceremony the father and mother stood by loudly lamenting. The thighs
were then roasted and eaten by the parents. The liver, heart and entrails were
then divided amongst the warriors, who carried away portions on their spears,
while the skin and bone, together with the skull, were rolled up and carried about
by the parents in their grass bags. Within the last few months a number of
Chinese miners in Northern Queensland have been killed and eaten by the
natives ! The natives are said to prefer Chinamen to white men, probably in
consequence of the Chinese being saturated with opium ; it serves as a sauce.
The land of the Southern Cross, whose dusky inhabitants, until a hundred
years ago, were lulled to sleep by the waters of the South Pacific — the land of the
fragrant eucalyptus and flowering wattle — we in thought go back to the time when
the native blacks sat round their camp fires telling their weird tales, whispering
in hushed tones as the darkness drew near ; then, as the wild instinct arose, some
outlet must be given to their savage natures, and the " corroboree " is called, the
sacred fire is lit ; then strange unearthly music reverberates through the forest,
and hundreds of savages gather round the fire with bodies covered with clay to
represent human skeletons ; then begins their slow, monotonous dance, their
arms moving, with bodies swaying, the droning, melancholy sounds echoing
through the air, keeping time to the strange music ; the music grows a little
faster, the motions a little quicker, the rapid movements and wild music wilder ;
faster and more furious grow the sounds, the demoniac yells of the excited
throng ; the very air is filled with angry spirits ; the black, gleaming faces of the
revellers are worked almost to frenzy, until at last they drop exhausted, the fire
burns dimly, and the wild savages are at rest in a solitude wilder even than their
savage natures, more sombre than the dusky children she has brought forth.
ZN the year i860 a merchant of Melbourne offered $5,000 for the furtherance
of discovery in Australia , the Royal Society of Victoria undertook to
organize an expedition for the purpose of crossing the continent,- and
collected subscriptions to the amount of $17,000; the Victorian Government
voted $30,000, and spent an additional sum of $15,000 in bringing twenty-six
camels from Arabia. Very complete arrangements were made. Robert O'Hara
Burke was chosen leader. M. J. Wills, an accomplished young astronomer, was
sent to take charge of the costly instruments and to make all the scientific
The stories told of early explorers are often sad, but I think the one of
Burke and Wills the .saddest of all. There were two other scientific men and
eleven subordinates, with twenty-eight horses to carry the baggage. On the 20th
of August, i860, the whole party set out from the Royal Park, Melbourne,
Burke heading the procession on a little grey horse. The Mayor made a short
speech, wishing them God-speed ; the explorers shook hands with their friends,
and, amid the cheers of thousands of spectators, they moved off. The journey,
as far as the Murrumbedgee, lay through settled country and was without interest,
but at that place quarrelling began, and Burke dismissed Landells, who had charge
of the camels, and secured the services of a man whom he met at a sheep
station, by the name of Wright, to fill his place. Wright was wholly unqualified
to fill this position, and was the cause of all the disasters which followed. On
leaving the Murrumbedgee they ascended the Darling till they reached Men-
indie, the place from which Hirst had set out sixteen years before. Here Burke
left Wright with half the expedition, intending himself to push on rapidly and to
be followed up more leisurely by Wright. Burke and Wills, with six men, and
half the camels and horses, set off through a miserable country, covered with a
kind of grass which poisoned the horses. They came to Cooper's Creek, where
they formed a depot and lived for .some time, waiting for Wright, who, however,
did not appear. But Burke grew tired of waiting, and as he was'now near the
centre of Australia, he determined to make a bold dash across to the Gulf of
Carpentaria. He left one of his men called Brake and three assistants, with six
camels and twelve horses, giving them instructions to remain for three months,
and if within that time he did not return, they might consider him lost, and would
26 AROUND THE WORLD.
then be at liberty to return to Menindie. On the i6th December, Burke and Wills,
along with two men named King and Gray, started on their perilous journey,
taking with them six camels and one horse, and provisions to last for three
months. They followed the broad current of Cooper's Creek for some distance,
and then struck off to the north till they reached a stream which they called
Eyre Creek. There they obtained abundant supplies of water, and kept along
its banks till it turned to the eastward ; then leaving it they turned due north
through forests of boxwood, alternating with plains well watered and richly
covered with grass. Six weeks after leaving Cooper's Creek they came upon a
fine stream which they named " Cloncurry," and following its course they found
it entered a large river, on whose banks they found the most luxuriant vegetation,
and frequent clusters of palm trees. They felt sure that it flowed into the Gulf
of Carpentaria, and, therefore, by keeping close to it they had nothing to fear.
But they had brought only three months' provisions with them ; more than half
that time had elapsed and they were still 150 miles from the sea. Burke now
lost no time, but hurried on so fast that one after another of the camels sank
exhausted, and when all the camels had given out, Burke and Wills took their
only horse to carry a small quantity of provisions, and leaving Gray and King
behind, set out by themselves on foot. They had to cross several patches of
swampy ground, and the horse becoming bogged, was unable to go further. Still
Burke and Wills hurried on by themselves till they reached a narrow inlet on the
Gulf of Carpentaria, and found that the river they had been following was the
Flinders, whose mouth had been discovered by Capt. Stokes in 1842. They
were anxious to see the open sea, but this would have required a couple of days,
and their provisions were already exhausted, and they were obliged to hasten
back as quickly as possible. The pangs of hunger overtook them before they
could reach the place where King and Gray had remained with the provisions.
Burke killed a snake and ate part of it, but he took ill immediately after, and
when at last they reached the provisions he was not able to go forward as
quickly as it was necessary to do if they wished to be safe. They recovered the
horse and camels, which had been refreshed by the rest, and by easy stages
they moved south towards home. But their hurried journey to the north under
a tropical sun had told severely on their constitutions. Gray became ill, and it
was now necessary to be so careful with the provisions that he had little chance of
regaining his strength. One evening after they had come to a halt he was found
sitting behind a tree eating a little mixture he had made for himself of flour and
water. Burke accused him of stealing the provisions and gave him a severe
AROUND THE WORLD. 27
thrashing. He seems never to have rallied after this, and whilst the party
moved forward he was slowly sinking. Towards the end of March they killed
a camel, dried its flesh, and then went forward. At the beginning of April this
was gone and they killed their horse. Gray now lay down, saying he could not
go on. Burke said he was "shamming," and left him. But Wills' gentle counsel
prevailed and they returned and brought him forward. But he could only go a
little further ; the poor fellow breathed his last a day or two after and was buried
in the wilderness. Burke regretted his harshness, all the more as he was quickly
sinking himself. Both he and Wills were utterly worn out ; they were thin and
meagre, and so weak that they tottered rather than walked. The last few miles
were very, very weary, but, at last, on the 21st April, they came in sight of the
depot, four months and a half after leaving it. Imagine their consternation on
seeing no sign of the people about the place, and as they dropped down on the
spot at sunset, their hearts sank when they found a note stating that Brake had
left only that very morning, and was seven hours march away. The three men
looked at one another in blank dismay ; they were so worn out that they could
not move forward with the hope of overtaking the party. On looking round they
saw the word " Dig" cut on a tree, and when they turned up the soil they found
a small supply of provisions. The party that had been left in charge of the
camp had remained a month and a half longer than they had been told to wait,
hoping for the return of Burke and Wills, but their own provisions becoming
scarce, and no sign of the man Wright, who had been told to follow closely on,
Brake thought it unsafe to remain there longer, and started off the very
day poor Burke and Wills arrived at the camp, weary and hungry. On the
evening they entered the camp, after having found the provisions at the foot of
the tree, the three men, Burke, Wills and King, made a hearty supper ; then for
a couple of days they rested their weary bodies But it was dangerous to remain
long, for at the best the provisions would only last to take them safely back to
the River Darling. Burke wished to go to Adelaide, because at Mount Hopeless
there was a large sheep station, and he thought it could not be more than 1 50
miles away. Wills was opposed to this. " It is true," he said, " Menindie is
350 miles away, but then we know the road and are sure of water all the way."
Burke could not be persuaded and they set out for Mount Hopeless. Following
Cooper's Creek for many miles, they entered a region of frightful barrenness.
Here, as one of the camels became too weak to go further, they were forced to
kill it and dry its flesh. They followed the creek into marshy thickets, made a
halt and found they had scarcely any provisions left, while their clothes were
28 AROUND THE WORLD.
falling to pieces. Their only hope was to reach Mount Hopeless as speedily as
possible ; they shot their last camel, and whilst Burke and King were drying its
flesh, Wills struck out to find Mount Hopeless, but no one knew where to look
for it, and after trudging over the dreary wastes, he came back unsuccessful. A
short rest was taken, and then they all started southward, determined this time
to reach the Mount. But they were too weak to travel fast, and wandered on,
day after day, over the dreary plains, and still no sign of a hill, till at length,
within fifty miles of Mount Hopeless, they gave in. Had they only gone but a
little farther they would have seen the summit of the hill, but just at this point
they lost hope and turned to go back. Again a weary journey and they reached
Cooper's Creek, but now with provisions for only a day or two. Burke said he
had heard the natives of Cooper's Creek lived chiefly on the seed of a plant
they called the nardoo, and if they could find a native tribe they might learn
where to find the seed. Accordingly, Burke and King set out to find a native
encampment, and finding one, they were kindly received by the blacks, who
showed them how to gather the little black seeds from a kind of grass. They
returned to Wills and began at once to gather the seed, but found that they
could scarcely find enough for two meals a day by working from morning till
night, and when evening came they had to clean, roast and grind it, and although
it was nutritious for the blacks, it was not so for them. It made them sick and
gave them no strength. It seems that fate was against them, for while they
were at this place a party visited the camp, intending to bring them relief, but
when they arrived there they saw no sign of them, although the unfortunate
men had been there only a few days before. Burke thought that by this time a
relief party might have reached the camp, and Wills offered to go and see if
anyone was there. He started by himself, and after three or four days reached
the place, to find it deserted. He could find no trace of its having been recently
visited, and turned back again to share the doom of his companions. He now
began to endure fearful pangs of hunger ; one evening he found an encampment
that had been abandoned by the natives, and around the fire were some fish
bones which he greedily picked. Next day he saw two small fish floating dead
upon a pool, and they made a delicious meal for the poor fellow. He was
rapidly sinking from hunger, when suddenly he met a native tribe. The black
men were exceedingly kind ; one carried his bundle, another helped him along,
and they led the gaunt and emaciated white man to their camp. They gave him
a little food, and whilst he was eating he saw a great quantity of fish on the fire ;
for a few minutes he wondered if they could possibly be for him ; at length they
AROUND THE WORLD. 29
were cooked and a large supply set before him. The natives gathered around
him and clapped their hands with delight when they saw him eat heartily. He
stayed with them four days, and then set out to bring his friends to enjoy like-
wise this ample hospitality. It took him some days to reach .the place where he
had left them, but when they heard his good news they lost no time in starting to
the camp of the natives. They were weak and travelled very slowly, and when they
reached the camp the natives were gone. Their feebleness overcame them and
they sank down in despair. All day they tried hard to prepare nardoo seed, but
their strength was too far gone, and now it was a grim fight with starvation.
Wills' mind began to wander, and he wrote a letter to his father. Dr. Wills, of
Ballarat, saying, " I think I will live four or five days." Burke thought now that
their only chance was to find the blacks, and he and King set out for that purpose.
They did not want to leave poor Wills, but no other course was possible. They
laid him softly within the hut, and placed at his head enough nardoo to last him
eight days. Wills asked Burke to take his watch and the letter he had written
to his father ; the two men pressed his hands, smoothed his couch tenderly for
the last time, and set out. There, in the silence of the wilderness, alone, with
only the trees to sigh their regret, he died. Burke and King walked on their
desperate errand. On the second day Burke lay down, saying he could go no
further. King entreated him to make another effort ; he dragged himself to a
clump of bushes, where he stretched his limbs wearily. He asked King to take
his watch and pocket-book, and if possible, to give them to his friends in Mel-
bourne. He asked King to remain with him until he was dead ; he would like
some one with him at the last. He spoke with difficulty, but told King not to
bury him, but to let him lie above ground with his pistol in his hand. They
passed a dreary, lonesome night, and in the morning Burke's life was ended.
King wandered for some time forlorn, but stumbled upon an encampment where
the natives had left some nardoo seed.
When Wright and Brake returned to Victoria with the news that there
was no sign of them at the depot, all the colonies showed their solicitude
by organizing relief parties, to start at once, thinking they might still be
alive. Queensland offered ^500 to assist the search. In following the course
of Cooper's Creek they were led to the district where Burke and Wills
had died. Several natives brought them to a hut where King was sitting,
pale and haggard, and wasted to a shadow. He was so weak that he could
scarcely speak, but after a day or two of good food his strength slightly
came back. They proceeded to the spot where the body of poor Wills lay, and
30 AROUND THE WORLD.
interred it decently. Then they found the thicket where the bones of Burke lay,
with the rusted pistol in his hand, and wrapping a Union Jack around them,
dug a grave. When King returned and related the sad story, the Victorian
Government sent a. party to bring the remains of Burke and Wills to Melbourne,
where they received the melancholy honors of a public funeral, amid the general
mourning of the whole colony.
I was much interested in this sad story, as some part of it was told to me on
the ship on my journey across the Pacific, one of the passengers remembering
well when the expedition started which ended so sadly. I went to see the
monument, which stands on. Spring Street, erected to the memory of the two
explorers. It is a large monument, with the life-size figures of Burke and Wills.
On each of the four sides of the pedestal is cut the four events in their journey —
the triumphal start on one side, the return to the deserted camp, and the tree
with the word " Dig," and at last the death of the poor fellows. The letter
which Wills wrote to his father I have seen in the museum at Melbourne.
"^HE desire to possess gold is a strong — perhaps the strongest — passion in
the heart of man. The hardships endured to get it seem almost
beyond human endurance. I do not refer to speculators, to stock
brokers, to railway kings, but to the men who started out with pick, shovel and
pan, and dug the earth for this treasure — here, where mental acquirements were
of no avail, but where physical endurance, patience and hardihood were the
From the years 1844 to 1848 New South Wales experienced great depression.
Hot winds and floods d^troyed the crops and ruined the farmers. Among the
most unfortunate of these squatters was Edward Hargraves. He had been in
the colony for twenty years, and expected to be in a position of comfort, but this
ruinous season dispelled his dreams. Just about that time gold was accidentally
discovered in California. Hargraves made up his mind to try his fortunes in
America, and embarked for California. After a great deal of hard work and
disappointment he succeeded in coming upon some very satisfactory ground, but
during his journeyings around the Sierras, he noticed that the California gold
fields bore a singular resemblance to a portion of the Bathurst district in New
South Wales. In the Sierras he noticed bold peaks of granite, while in the Blue
Mountains of New South Wales the same characteristics were present. Even
the color of the soil was the same. Hargraves thought to himself that if any
faith could be placed in resemblances, gold fields certainly existed in Australia.
He wrote to a friend in Sydney : " I am forcibly impressed that I have been in a
gold region in New South Wales, within 300 miles of Sydney, and unless you
knew how to find it you might live for a century in the region and know nothing
of its existence."
He had a friend who tried to persuade him to remain in America, and said
to him : " Do you suppose that you have only to go to Australia and immediately
find out what all the geologists have been unable to discover ? They have
searched these mountains, and if they could have made their fortunes by finding
a gold field, you may be sure they would have done so long before this." Har-
graves was not at all convinced by his friend's argument, and started on his
homeward journey across the Pacific. While on the ship he became eager and
excited, and dilated to the passengers on his expectations. But they only shook
32 AROUND THE WORLD.
their heads and smiled sadly, and at last they came to the conclusion that the
man was insane. After a few experiences of this kind he resolved to keep silence
on the subject, perceiving how improbable his theory appeared to others.
In January, 185 1, Hargraves arrived in Sydney, and proceeded to visit a
few friends. He spoke of his plans, but they, too, treated him as a visionary.
He was obliged to borrow money from men who regarded him with suspicion,
and, although he promised to pay the debt in a few months, he was obliged to
pay over a hundred per cent, for the loan of a few pounds, with which he bought
a horse and a supply of provisions. He could not prevail upon any friend to
accompany him, and being too poor to pay for assistance, he started alone on his
journey to find the gold fields that he was sure existed, but which his friends
thought existed only in his imagination. On the second day he began the ascent
of the Blue Mountains by the Bathurst road. In front of him stood the
tremendous rocks of the range, that seemed to bar all entrance beyond. On the
other side of the plateau he passed through the Vale of the Clwyd, and descended
the face of the cliffs by that alarming and extraordinary road known as Sir
Thomas Mitchell's Pass. Beyond this lay the beautiful country occupied by the
.squatters of the Bathurst district, and on the next part of his journey travellers
were more numerous. Inns were placed at intervals of ten or twelve miles along
the road ; but in every one of these places a general feeling of depression was
evident. One of the inn-keepers was complaining of the state of depression in
all the country, and Hargraves could not refrain from hinting at the object of his
journey. " Do you know," said he, " that the reason I have come all the way
from California is to change all that, and bring about a better state of affairs."
On hearing his scheme the landlord could not forbear a smile of incredulity. He
had heard of many foolish enterprises designed to raise the country from its
depression, but this, he said, was the maddest project he had yet heard. Har-
graves was not to be discouraged and resumed his journey. Owing to the
denseness of the forest it was impossible to see far ahead, and in trying a short
cut to Guzong, he lost his way in the bush. Darkness overtook him, and he
groped about in the woods for several hours. At last he succeeded in getting
the road again, and reached Guzong safely. But this little misadventure caused
him to feel that perhaps he was not so well acquainted with the country as he had
imagined. He was obliged to inquire for a guide to take him through the thick
forest to the valley of Summerhill Creek, which was his destination. Mrs. Lester,
the landlady of the Guzong inn, was much interested in the object of his expecta-
tions, although not hopeful about the result. She told Hargraves that her son
AROUND THE WORLD. 33
knew the country well, and would be willing to act as guide. On the morning of
February 12, 1851, Hargraves and his guide started from the inn on horseback,
carrying a tin dish, a trowel, and a small pick. It was midsummer, when the
almost tropical rays of the sun make the least exertion oppressive. They had a
journey before them of great difficulty, for their way lay along the dry bed of the
creek, across which trees, stones and rock were piled in great confusion. Not a
word was spoken as they pursued their journey, for the mind of Hargraves was
occupied by the most intense strain. He knew that the events of an hour or two
would determine his destiny — whether he should figure before the world as a
great discoverer, or as a disappointed visionary. At length, after fifteen miles
of arduous travelling, Hargraves espied a portion of the country which had so long
been present to him in visions. His memory had not deceived him, for there
were the slates, the trap rocks, and granite, while all around he could see heaps
of gravel and pieces of quartz. The journey had almost exhausted his strength,
and in spite of his excitement and eagerness, Hargraves quietly sat- down on the
grass. He pointed to the banks of the creek, saying, " Now, at last, we are in
the gold fields ; in a short time I shall test whether they are worth anything or
not. Meanwhile, the first thing to be done is to make dinner." They turned
their horses loose and prepared a rude meal, which they ate in silence. But
Hargraves could not long maintain his calmness. He swallowed his food as
quickly as possible, and, springing to his feet, he seized the implements. In
front of him he saw a bank of red earth and clay, mixed with half-formed stone
and slate. Having scratched off the surface with the pick, he brought out a little
earth and gravel with his trowel. Then, placing it in the pan, he went to a water
hole, mixed it up and washed out the earth. There, at the bottom of the pan, he
could distinguish just one small grain of gold. " There it is," he exclaimed,
and showed it to his companion. They washed out five panfulls, and in four of
them they found gold. " This is a memorable day in the history of New South
Wales," said Hargraves, as he stood with the dripping prospect pan. Then he
exclaimed: "For this day's work I shall be created a baronet, you will be
knighted, and my old horse will be stuffed with straw and sent to the British
museum ! " The youth took this seriously, as he acknowledged afterwards ; for
it seemed to him that the man who could find gold in such a wilderness could
bring about almost anything. After a long day of hard work and excitement,
they returned, very much exhausted, to the inn, where Hargraves immediately
wrote a memorandum relating what had occurred during the day. He intended
to give this to the Colonial Secretary, but he wished to determine first the extent
34 AROUND THE WORLD.
of the area in which gold could be found. Next day he set out again. They
had eighty miles to travel before reaching the Macquarie River. Margraves
hastened on his work as much as possible, for he was already beginning to be
troubled with that nightmare of all discoverers — the dread of being anticipated in
the important announcement. Hargraves made his way to another district
further on towards the interior, which he remembered as bearing a close resem-
blance to a gold field. Having travelled a distance of more than loo miles from
Bathurst, he arrived at Dubbo, and here he visited a friend whom he knew,
named Cruikshank. The house of his friend stood immediately in front of a
stream called Mitchell's Creek, and Hargraves boldly asserted to him that he
would find gold within twenty yards of the door. The man was utterly incredu-
lous, but Mrs. Cruikshank was eager for a trial. They stepped out of the door-
way, and Hargraves, after washing a panful of earth, showed them, to their
astonishment, several small grains of gold. The woman was delighted, and in a
few days she had gathered enough gold to make several rings, which she kept as
a memento of the discovery of the Australian gold fields. Hargraves had now
seen enough to convince him of the importance of his discovery, and set out on
his return journey to Sydney. On being shown into the office of the Colonial
Secretary, he produced a small box full of fine gold dust, and stated that it was
the produce of a few days' work in a district which he had discovered in New
South Wales. Mr. — afterwards Sir Edward — Thomson received his statement
with suspicion, and candidly told his visitor that he could not believe any such
report. In the early days of settlement a convict had been flogged for having, as
he himself admitted, tried to pass off some brass as a nugget of Australian gold.
And on several subsequent occasions the Government had nearly been duped into
giving rewards for pretended gold discoveries. Above all, the Colonial Secretary
reflected that the eminent geologists, Stryelecki and Clarke, although aware of
the existence of auriferous quartz throughout various parts of the colony, had
never given any hints of genuine gold fields such as those of California. " It is
very hard for me to believe that a gold field can possibly exist in New South
Wales," said he. " Surely these geologists would have discovered it before this
time. And besides this," he added, " you must remember that as soon as Australia
becomes known as a gold-producing country, it is utterly spoiled as a receptacle
for convicts." Hargraves assured him that he was not to be deterred by any
consideration of that sort. If the convicts and gold fields could not exist
together, then so much the worse for the convicts. And he certainly did expect
the Government to reward him for so important a discovery. He desired the
AROUND THE WORLD. 35
Government to give him, as soon as he should prove the existence of a gold field,
the sum of ;^500 as compensation for his trouble and outlay. The Colonial
Secretary closed with his offer, and the Government geologist was deputed to
accompany Hargraves and ascertain whether his reports were true. About thirty
men followed the two travellers. The excitement of the crowd was intense when
they reached the Macquarie, and Hargraves showed the geologist that the soil was
richly impregnated with gold. Immediately pans and cradles were in request,
and so profitable was the ground that within two weeks about ^10,000 worth of
gold had been unearthed. In Sydney the news created the wildest confusion.
Men whose faculties had lain dormant for years, now started into activity. Some
started for the gold fields prepared to work hard ; others had no idea that hard
work was required. Some of them shouldered a shovel to lift up the gold, and a
bag to carry it home, and thus equipped, went forward to make their fortunes.
The consequence was that many were grievously disappointed. Hargraves was
appointed Commissioner of Crown Lands at a salary of £^^0 per annum. The
Parliament ot New South Wales voted him the sum of ^10,000, inclusive of the
^500 which he at first received. Victoria added to this sum ^2,500. In addi-
tion he received testimonials from citizens of Sydney and Melbourne to the value
of ^1,000. He was honored as a benefactor to his country. I am indebted to
Mr. George Sutherland, M. A., for the above facts. All the letters which passed
between Hargraves and the Parliament can be seen in the museum at Sydney.
In the same year in which gold was discovered in New South Wales it was
discovered in Victoria, the southern portion of Australia, by a man named
Esmond. Near the place where the city of Ballarat now stands has been found
the largest amount of gold ever yet discovered in the world. The facts in relation
to these gold fields are exciting in the extreme. In 1862 two men arrived in the
district, very poor. Their names were Deeson and Oates. They selected a
place for operation, and erected a puddling machine, driven by horse-power.
During the first two or three years they were rather fortunate. They unearthed
a nugget worth about .^100, and then another valued at ;^400. They were now
above want, but then came four years of very bad luck, and in 1869 they found
their money entirely gone. They could get no credit at the stores, although
they were sober and industrious. On Friday, February 5th, Deeson sent to the
store for a bag of flour, promising to pay for it in a few days. It was refused.
Having no money, he found for the first time his family in actual want of bread.
After fifteen years of hard work, they were worse off than on their arrival.
When they went to work that morning they were both in a savage mood, for
36 AROUND THE WORLD.
their land was nearly worked out ; the farther they went upward the less gold
they found. Deeson plied his pick in some hard, brick-like clay around the roots
of an old tree, breaking up fresh earth and tearing away the grass from the
surface of the ground. He aimed a blow at a clear space between two branches
of the roots, and the pick, instead of sinking into the ground, rebounded as if it
had hit upon quartz or granite. "Confound it!" he exclaimed, " I have broken
my pick." A minute afterwards he called out to Oates, and told him to " Come
and see what this was." It was a mass of gold cropping several inches out of
the ground. As it was disclosed to view the men were lost in amazement at its
enormous size. It was over a foot in length, and nearly the same in width.
Their joy was great, indeed. Here, after years of toil and actual want, their
fortune was found. It was unsafe to keep the nugget with them, and still more
dangerous to carry it to Melbourne, a distance of loo miles. So they stopped at
the London Chartered Bank, while a large crowd gathered around. Deeson
stepped into the bank, and having requested to see the manager, asked him
" How much would you give for a lump of gold as big as your head ?" The
manager ordered him out, thinking he was drunk, but seeing the crowd at the
door, he stepped out and looked into the cart. Hi.s tone altered immediately and
the two diggers were requested to enter. When the nugget had been deposited
on the floor of the banker's room, the amount of pure gold was 2,2683^ ounces.
The sum given for it was nearly $50,000. They named the nugget the
" Welcome Stranger." The model, or cast, is in the museum, which I looked at
with a great deal of curiosity, after hearing the history and struggles of the two
men who found it. The nugget was found at Moliagul.
There are large quantities of gold being found at the present time at all the
principal gold fields — Ballarat, Sandhurst, Eaglehawk, Creswick, Maiden, Arrarat
and Walhalla. Nuggets are sometimes found, varying in value from $50 to $10,000.
Two new alluvial gold fields have been recently discovered, namely, Kimberly,
situated in the northern part of Western Australia, and Tetulpa, in South Aus-
tralia. A silver mine, said to be the richest in the world, has been discovered at
Silverton, New South Wales. The out-put of silver from this mine averages
80,000 ounces a week. Rich silver mines have recently been discovered in
the northern part of Queensland.
Diamonds have been found at Kingara and the Cudgegong River in New
South Wales, in the Ovens district, and several places in the vicinity of Beech-
worth, in Victoria, and in the beds of several of the tributaries of the Gilbert
River, in Queensland. Nine hundred and twenty diamonds were found at one
name! & FeVguson PrTrf
Premier Building Association 8tDeposil' Bank.
AROUND THE WORLD.
mine at Kingara. Rubies, sapphires and garnets are. found in several of the gold
fields. Agates are found in the creek beds of the Gilbert River district in
Queensland. Opals, emeralds and amethysts are found in Western Australia in
the Kimberly districts. The superstition in regard to opals seems to be unknown
in this country. I have seen more opals in one jeweller's window in Melbourne
than ever before.
^^i^^ VERYONE, on arriving in Australia first, has a curiosity to see the
^ kangaroo, an animal that is found in no other part of the world except
Tasmania. I can remember, when a child, in my natural history
lessons, looking with great interest at the picture of a kangaroo, and all readers
know that it is marsupial and carries its young in a bag or pouch, which is at
the breast ; and, in time of danger, it is amusing to see the little ones spring into
this pouch and the mother jump away with them, for she does not run, but jumps,
on her hind legs only. They are the most gentle-eyed creatures in the world, and
in the Zoological Gardens, where many of them are kept, they come up to be
fed, and submit to being stroked, while looking at you inquiringly with their
large, soft eyes.
There are several large varieties of these strange animals. The forestei' is
the largest, standing six feet, and weighing one hundred to one hundred and forty
pounds. The brush is the size of a sheep, and the wallabi is rather larger than a
cat. The curious little creatures, the kangaroo rat and the kangaroo mouse, are
diminutive animals of nocturnal habits. The kangaroo has become a nuisance to
squatters, and hunting parties are organized to shoot them ; as many as a
thousand have been shot in a day. Their mode of defence is striking with the
hind feet, which are very powerful. At the extremity of the foot there is a long,
sharp claw, and woe be to the unwary dog that goes within reach, for, when
brought to bay, it strikes a powerful blow.
A gentleman was telling me, who had been on a hunting expedition, that
shooting the young ones was by no means pleasant, as their cries resemble that
of a young child in distress, — a plaintive cry that, he said, sounded in his ears for
days after. The skin is used for leather, and, when left with the hair on, makes
rather pretty rugs.
The birds are very numerous, and the plumage beautiful, but one misses the
musical notes of our northern birds. The emu is to be found here. In size,
form and habits it is very like the ostrich. It is swift in flight and very wild.
The eggs are large and of a deep green color. There are a few ostrich farms
here. Some of these immense birds stand six feet in height. Some of the
feathered tribe are remarkable for the singularity of their notes. There is one
called the coachman, or whip bird, which has a note like the crack of a whip ;
AROUND THE WORLD. 39
another the bell bird, about the size of a sparrow, " rings out a peal like village
chimes." The most remarkable of all is the bird called the laughing jackass,
which almost startles one with a laugh that is sardonic, satanic and satirical.
The magpie, the most mischievous of birds, is easily taught to speak, sing
and whistle. Then the gorgeous parrots, paroquets and cockatoos are very-
numerous. The bird of paradise is a most beautiful bird. Among the birds of
prey there is the vulture, so fierce that when pressed by hunger it will attack the
natives themselves, but it is rarely seen. The white eagle is more common and
is about the size of a goose. The cockatoos live to a great age. A gentleman in
New South Wales had one that was in the family one hundred years. There is
the pelican, a very ugly looking bird ; it is about three times as large as a goose,
and has an imrhense bill. Altogether, it is the ugliest thing in the shape of a
bird I have ever seen. While I was looking at one, part of that beautiful poem,
" From Death to Life," came to my mind : —
" Have you heard the tale of the Pelican,
The Arab's gemel-el-bahr.
That lives in the African solitudes
Where the birds that live lonely are ?
Have you heard how it loves its tender young.
And toils and cares for their good ?
It brings them water from fountains afar
And fishes the sea for their food.
In famine it feeds them — what love can devise ! —
The blood of its bosom, and feeding them dies."
Then there are numbers of that most graceful of all birds, the swan. There
is the white and black swan to be found here, and again these lines came to my
mind : —
" Have you heard the tale they tell of the Swan —
That snow-white bird of the lake ?
It noiselessly floats on the silvery wave ;
It silently sits in the brake.
For it saves its song till the end of life.
Then, in the soft, still even,
'Mid the golden light of the setting sun
It sings as it soars to Heaven,
And the blessed notes fall back from the skies ;
'Tis its only song, for in singing it dies."
[j^^HERE is one animal in Australia that deserves special mention, although
it is difficult to know how to classify it, as it is neither flesh, fish, nor
fowl. Scientists have puzzled their brains for some time over this
strange thing called the Platypus. When first discovered it was sent to England to
the naturalists for classification. But the scientific men of that country said
" the Australians were playing a practical joke on them ; that they had sent an
animal with fur on, and had stuck the bill of a duck on to it, and that it was not
well stuck on either. But they afterwards discovered that nature had fastened
the bill on, and it does look as though she had left her work in an unfinished
manner. I have looked at the strange animal with a great deal of interest, and
it is the only thing I have seen that could, to my mind, substantiate Darwin's
theory, for here is an animal that is certainly undergoing a great change. What
the original was it is difficult to determine, but what it is now — its habits and
peculiarities — has been discovered. It is part bird, part animal, and part fish. It
looks like a small beaver that has borrowed a duck's bill for masquerading pur-
poses. The animal is small, brown and velvety, with most beautiful fur, not
unlike seal skin. The fur is used for all purposes that ordinary fur is used for.
It is found in almost every river in Victoria, New South Wales, and Tasmania.
I saw an article in one of the Australian papers in regard to the manner in which
the platypus suckles its young. I give it to my readers as it was written : —
" The puzzle now seems to be to account for how the young platypus man-
ages to suckle. It will be seen, upon examination, that the bill of the platypus
overlaps, that is, the top projects some distance over the lower. This prevents
it from being able to attach itself to the breast of the female ; and as there is no
teat whatever, not even a bare spot on the breast, it is obvious that there must be
some other means for the young to procure the milk. There is no possible difference
in the fur on the breast from that on the back, and no sign of mammary glands to
be detected by the naked eye. However, if a female with young is taken and
pressed firmly in the hand, holding the breast upward, the milk will exude on
to the breast on both sides between the front and back flappers or fins. The
milk is exceedingly rich, and will not run off the fur. The mother, to give her
young milk, lies on her back, and, by pressure of nerves on the milk glands,
AROUND THE WORLD. 41
causes the milk to exude on to the breast fur, whence it is sucked up by the
young. This is the true solution proved by observation."
The eggs of this strange animal are about the size of pigeons' eggs. It has
been proven that it lays eggs and suckles its young. Truly an interesting " link"
in natural history.
^^ WILL not attempt to describe all the trees, or flora, of Australia, as it
/| would require a book of no small dimensions, so numerous and varied are
the varieties. There is the great family of the eucalypti, or gum tree. As a
fever preventative the qualities of this tree are well known. The native cherry
tree-attains a height of about twenty feet. The peculiarity of the fruit formation
is that the stone grows on the outside of the cherry. The tree fern, one of the
most beautiful specimens of the vegetable world, is found in all its luxuriance in
the upper part of -the river valleys in the coast districts, and in the gorges and
ravines of the mountain regions. I wish I had space to describe to my readers
the beauty and varieties of the ferns to be seen in Australia. From the delicate
maiden-hair to the tall sturdy fern tree, there is a gradation that furnishes study
for the botanist and pleasure for the lover of the beautiful. There are fern
trees which grow to the height of ten and some twenty feet. Imagine a fern
tree with its waving fern fronds overhead, while at your feet creep the green,
feathery, delicate sprays of maiden-hair.
The gigantic nettle is one of the singular trees indigenous to Australia. It
is found in the scrub jungles of the coast district, where it reaches a height
frequently of lOO feet. The leaves are large, and on the under part there is a
poisonous fluid. The sting from this fluid is very severe, and horses and cattle
have been known to die after coming in contact with it. The acacia is well
represented. Over a hundred species have been discovered. The Australian
oak, of which there are various species, is to be found in different parts of the
continent. There is a variety of palms. The cabbage palm attains a height of
1 20 feet. The young embryo leaves are soft and very pleasant to the taste.
They are cut out of the young trees and used as food by the aborigines. When
roasted it is quite palatable.
Among the most beautiful flowers to be found in Australia is the orchid, of
which there are many varieties. The magnolia trees are extremely beautiful.
The exquisite lily tree, which grows to a height of twelve feet, with its wax-like
flowers, is almost perfect in its delicate coloring. But, notwithstanding the
beautiful trees and flowers which are to be found in Australia, the landscape
effect is monotonous. I miss the running brooks and mossy banks of my own
country, the autumn tints of our Canadian forest, for here in Australia the grass
AROUND THE WORLD. 43
is brown and scorched with heat, and in many instances there are miles and miles
of sand, and one can imagine one's self in an Arabian desert. Farther on can
be seen the seared grass and eucalyptus trees, with their gnarled and twisted
branches, that look as if nature had made an effort to see into what strange, con-
torted shapes she could form a tree. These trees always make a strange impres-
sion on my mind — as though I was looking at a human being, deformed, writhing
in pain, with long arms, twisted and contorted in agony.
The long periods of dry weather constitute the most dreaded feature of
Australian life. In some parts of the country three years have been known to
pass and no rainfall. Sheep die by hundreds, and the squatters are ruined
financially. Then again the rain falls in torrents, sweeping everything before it,
bridges and houses, and frequent loss of life has occurred from these freshets.
The most oppressive feature in connection with Australian life is the hot wind.
It is not unlike the sirocco which visits Italy and other countries in the south of
Europe. It is difficult to write about the temperature, for I think it the most
capricious temperature in the world. The changes through which one passes
sometimes in a day are astonishing — rain, heat and cold. In January of this year
— 1887 — in Melbourne, the thermometer stood thus : Thursday, 97° in the shade ;
Friday, 98° ; Saturday, 99° ; Sunday, 104° in the shade and 153° in the sun. At
Rockhampton, Queensland, it was 125° in the shade. Water boils at 212°, but I
think blood boils at 104°, as I am certain that mine did that terrible Sunday.
OME of the natives or aborigines of Australia possess a faculty or art
— one scarcely knows how to name it — which is truly wonderful. They
might well be called human blood-hounds, for if put on the track of a crim-
inal, they hunt him down with an instinct that is marvelous — over sandy hard
roads where a white man fails to discern the faintest trace of footsteps, through
tangled forests, across streams until the fugitive, criminal or thief is found. It
is necessary to keep them isolated, or, at least, in their savage state, for by con-
tact or association with Europeans they lose this strange faculty. The Govern-
ment is just awakening to the advantage of this strange gift, and many of the
natives are employed for the purpose of tracking criminals.
Just a few days ago a man in this colony — Victoria — was riding on horse-
back and was stunned in some way, falling from his horse, where he lay for some
time. Partially recovering, he wandered into the bush in a semi-conscious state
and was lost. Here let me tell my readers that there is no place in the world
where one can get so inextricably tangled as in an Australian bush. The friends
of the missing man started in search, many people assisting who were familiar
with the bush, but they could find no trace of him. They were about to give the
man up for lost, when as a last resort they put the " black-trackers" — as they are
called — out, and in a short time they discovered him.
A few years ago a banker went to the gold diggings to buy gold from the
miners. After purchasing he started homewards, but was murdered by the way-
side. His horse and carriage were found, the vehicle showing signs of a struggle,
as it was bespattered with blood. Putting the " black-trackers " on the road,
they showed them the track of the carriage wheels, and following up the trail
with unerring instinct, they came to a shanty occupied by two men, about twenty
miles from the scene of the struggle. The men, were arrested on suspicion, but
none of the gold could be discovered. The house was searched and at length
pulled down, but still no trace of the gold. The " black-trackers" were observed
to go round and round an old stable, that was built by putting four posts in the
ground. They stopped before one of the supports, pointed downwards, and upon
lifting the post the gold was found underneath.
The two men were convicted and hanged for the murder. I could mention
hundreds of instances of their skill, which seems almost supernatural. Perhaps
they possess the long-talked-of and much-discussed sixth sense.
/vJEW BUILDINGS IM COLLINS ST .FOF\ C H. ^AfvlES ESQ.
AROUND THE WORLD. 45
It seems almost incredible, while looking around on this fair land, that it
was at one time the refuge of the convict, the home of England's worst criminals,
the scene of horrors which make the flesh creep to mention, where the
sound of the lash was daily heard as it descended on the bare back and
shoulders of the prisoners, many of whom died from the terrible treatment they
For many years New South Wales was a settlement for criminals. The
beautiful city of Sydney was at one time only a criminal dep6t. New South
Wales, Van Dieman's Land and Norfolk Island were the penal settlements.
After being sent from England, on their arrival in New South Wales, for fresh
misdemeanors and crimes committed there, the worst of the prisoners, the most
lawless and ungovernable, were transferred to Norfolk Island. It was the convict's
hell; once there hope left them. The very name was a terrcw to them. The prisoners
were treated as brutes, not as human beings ; the worst part of their nature was
aroused, and after a length of time they degenerated into mere animals. The
usual mode of punishment was to place the prisoner on a triangle with the feet
fastened with thongs at the base of the triangle, the arms extended and the bare
back turned toward the man who held the " cat," and the refinement of cruelty
was reached when the warder compelled one prisoner to flog another. Hundreds
of instances occurred where prisoners died from the effect of the flogging, died
like dogs bruised and beaten to death. I- leave it for my readers to decide which
was the most culpable, the transported criminal or the brute who flogged them
to death. The convicts were, many of them, undoubtedly of the worst type,
but did ill-usage ever, from the beginning of the world, tend to improve, soften,
or reclaim a human being? In many instances little boys were sent out from
England for some slight offence, sent to herd with the hardened criminal, to
listen to the groans and curses in the " Kingdom of Hell." They too were
beaten and flogged until life became unbearable, and many times their bodies
were found where they had thrown themselves over the cliff to escape the lash.
Here is an extract from " His Natural Life," by Marcus Clarke : —
Sylvia was resting on a bench that, placed at the summit of a cliff, over-
looked the sea. 'While resting there she became aware of another presence, and,
turning her head, beheld a small boy with his cap in one hand and a hammer in
the other. The appearance of the little creature, clad in a uniform of grey cloth
that was too large for him, and holding in his withered little hand a hammer that
was too heavy for him, had something pathetic about it.
46 AROUND THE WOULD.
" What is it, you mite ?" she asked.
" Me thought you might have seen him, mum," said the little figure, opening
its blue eyes with wonder at the kindness of the tone,
"Cranky Brown, him as did it this morning. Me and Billy knowed him;
he was a mate of ours, and we wanted to know if he looked happy."
" What do you mean, child .-*" said she, with a strange terror at her heart ;
and then filled with pity at the aspect of the little being, she drew him to her
with sudden womanly instinct and kissed him.
" Oh ! " he said.
Sylvia kissed him again.
" Does nobody ever kiss you, poor little man ?" said she.
" Mother used to, but she's at home. Oh, mum," with a sudden crimsoning
of the little face, "may I fetch Billy ?"
And taking courage, he gravely marched to an angle of the rock and brought
out another little creature, with another grey uniform and another hammer.
" This is Billy, mum," he said. " Billy never had no mother. Kiss Billy."
She felt the tears rush to her eyes. "You two poor babies ! " she said.
And then forgetting that she was a lady, dressed in silks and laces, she fell on
her knees in the dust, and folding the friendless pair in her arms, wept over them.
When Sylvia went away Tommy and Billy put into execution a plan which
they had carried in their poor little heads for many weeks.
" I can do it now," said Tommy. " I feel strong."
"Will it hurt much, Tommy ? "
" Not so much as a whipping."
" I'm afraid ! Oh, Tom, it's so deep ! Don't leave me, Tom ! "
The bigger boy took his little handkerchief from his neck and with it bound
his own left hand to Billy's right.
" Now I can'/ leave you."
"What was it the lady that kissed us said. Tommy ?"
" Lord, have pity on these two fatherless children," replied Tommy.
" Let's say it, Tom."
And so the two babies knelt on the brink of the cliff, and raising their bound
hands together, looked up at the sky and said, " Lord, have pity on we two
fatherless children!" And then they kissed each other, and "did it."
AROUND THE WORLD. _ 47
There is a great variety of snakes in Australia, many of them poisonous.
The most to be dreaded is the death adder. The name is suggestive, for the
bite is always fatal. It is not more than two and a half feet in length, thick,
and does not taper gradually towards the tail like other snakes. It is a dusky
brown with grey spots, and looks like a dried branch. Will stretch itself motion-
less on the ground, and never turns aside to avoid a person, but is never the
assailant, and will not bite unless trodden upon, or in self-defence. But people
are frequently bitten, as it lies so still, and looks so much like a dried branch, that
people step upon it, and discover too late that they have been bitten by the
dreaded death adder. The unfortunate one does not try remedies, as in ordinary
snake bites, as it has been proven useless. The only thing is to wait for death,
which occurs generally within thirty minutes after being bitten.
The black snake is poisonous and about four or five feet in length. This
one will not wait to be trodden upon, like the death adder, before it attacks, but
frequently makes the attack. Fortunately .its bite is not so fatal as that of
the death adder.
The whip snake, long and slender, of greenish tint, is poisonous, but its bite
seldom fatal. There are many varieties of water snakes, all exceedingly venomous,
and some very large, with tails flat.
The green snake is venomous, but not dreaded.
The tiger snake is one to be dreaded, as its bite is very poisonous.
The diamond snake destroys by strangulation, bite harmless, length from
eight to eighteen feet.
There are more poisonous snakes in Australia than any place in the world
except India, but fortunately there are few people bitten, unlike India, where
statistics show more deaths from snake bites than from any other casualties. I
have seen a very good picture painted by a young Australian artist, called " An
Unwelcome Visitor." It is a bush scene, in which a man has been disturbed by
the sight of a tiger snake just near him. The horror on the man's face is clearly
depicted, while the unwelcome visitor is admirably executed.
ELBOURNE, th*e capital of Victoria, has a population of 371,000,
but the large suburbs take the resident population from the centre,
and the " correct " thing is to reside in either Toorak or St. Kilda,
both fashionable suburbs. Trains run into the city from St. Kilda every ten
minutes. It is difficult to imagine Melbourne a "new" city, yet it is barely fifty
years old. It seems incredible that such a city could be built in so short a space
of time. Even, to Americans, who are accustomed to the " newness " of every-
thing, Melbourne cannot fail to cause astonishment. But let my readers banish
all thought of comparing it to the so-called " cities " of western America. There
are no cheap, wooden buildings that look as though a wind would carry them
away, but everything is solid and substantial, and looks more like Chicago than
any place I can compare it to. The streets are block paved, and there is an
excellent system of cable cars ; the pavements are flag stoned ; the principal
streets ninety-nine feet in width. I will mention here, en passant, that owing to
the climate, the buildings are toned down and have an appearance of age.
Government House, architecturally, is not a thing of beauty, but it is large, and
the grounds are magnificent. It is occupied at the present time by Sir Henry
There is a beautiful aquarium in the grounds of the Exhibition building,
where lovers of the "finny" tribe can see strange and beautiful specimens of
exquisitely tinted little creatures of the ocean world. The new Houses of Parlia-
ment, now in process of erection, will be very imposing.
There is a splendid University, handsome churches, coffee palaces and fine
hotels ; and in speaking of hotels, there is one thing that I think everyone born
in America will agree with me in, that is the objection to the system of employing
bar-maids in all hotels and saloons. It is useless trying to get accustomed to it.
A woman looks strangely out of place behind a bar, selling liquor to men. No
matter who the woman may be, ever so low, ever so degraded, there is generally
a trace of womanly grace or feminine softness about her, but this practice seems
to me to rob her of every trace of gentleness and grace. In nearly all hotels
they are employed ; many of them are very pretty, and if they were in America
a number of avenues would be open for them to gain a livelihood, but here in
Australia fewer ways are open to women. There is the domestic servant, the
AROUND THE WORLD. 49
sewing girl and the bar-maid. The position of the bar- maid is pecuniarily a better
one than that of servant or sewing girl.
There are a number of beautiful theatres in Melbourne, the most charming
one being the " Princess." It is the most beautiful bijou theatre in the world.
New York or London have nothing to compare with it. Only in Paris can
anything so beautiful be found in the way of a theatre.
Australians are great lovers of the play, and Melbourne is the greatest
theatre-going place in the world for its population, and they are passionate lovers
of music. An Italian opera company is here now — brought out from Italy — ■
which gives the finest compositions of the best composers, and the house is filled
The Botanical Gardens are marvels of beauty. There, where everything
grows with tropical luxuriance, the small bushes become trees, and it looks strange
to northern eyes to see plants on which so much time and care are spent in
Canada, growing into tall trees. The oleander grows to the height of fifteen
feet. A rose bush is a rose bush no longer ; in this country it becomes a tree.
And then the most beautiful of all, to which I cannot help referring again, is the
There are several handsome streets in Melbourne — Elizabeth, Flinders,
Swanston, Bourke and Collins, the two latter being the principal thoroughfares.
Collins is the fashionable street, where the beauty and wealth congregate in
the afternoons to "do the block." The ladies of Melbourne dress well and
handsomely, much more expensively than the ladies of Canada, and in better
taste than those of America. They evidently have an artistic eye for harmony,
for here you do not see women looking as though they had purchased their
clothes from a second-hand clothing store. That is, they do not wear a dress of
one color, a hat of another, gloves of a different shade, and so on, but if they dress
in white they are sensible of the harmony of color, and dress in all white ; if in
black, all black ; if in grey, gloves, hat, parasol, ribbons, are all grey. Like
Parisienne women, they are particular that everything shall match. Even though
they may wear an outre color, it will not offend the eye, because it will all har-
monize. But they lack the individuality of dress which characterizes the American
women. In America women have come to understand that the same fashion can
not be adopted by the tall, the stout, the fair and the dark. But in Melbourne,
although taste in color is allowed to have scope, the manner in which the garment
is made will not change. If it is fashionable to have a skirt or costume elaborately
trimmed, everyone follows that rule. The aesthetic maiden and the portly dame
50 AROUND THE WORLD.
all appear in garments made precisely the same. The cook, the bar-maid, the
serving girl, the lady of leisure, all the same cut of garments. But they have the
advantage of Canadians in the idea of harmony, that is, their gloves, dress,
hat, etc., are one color. A theatre or opera house in the evening in Melbourne
is a very pretty sight, as the ladies all, or nearly all, appear in evening dress. It
is a rare thing here to see a lady at a theatre except in evening dress. Many
Canadians have adopted the custom of Americans, in going to a theatre with hats
or bonnets on, oftentimes making it impossible to see the stage. Here such a
thing would not be allowed. There is a cloak room for hats, cloaks and bonnets.
The theatres are not bui't like American theatres. In Australia the orchestra
chairs are the . stalls, and are the second best seats in the house. The first
seats are in the parquette, which is raised much higher than in America.
There is a different entrance to each. People who do not dress and wish low
priced seats, take the stalls, but I have not seen any lady in the parquette except
in evening dress, since my arrival in Australia, and it is a much prettier sight
than the street dress worn by many Canadians and nearly all Americans.
The Zoological Gardens are well worth visiting, and many strange animals
are to be seen there : animals from India, Japan, America and Africa, tropical
birds and poisonous snakes, and, much to my amusement, a Canadian goose has
been given a large plot of ground, is labelled, and looked upon as one of the
curiosities. A goose is nothing in his own country, but remove him from his
plebeian surroundings, take him to a strange country, put him in a zoological
garden, labelled, and he really assumes a dignity hitherto undreamed of
I visited the museum in connection with the University of Melbourne, and
found there a world of wonders. Three or four days could be profitably and
pleasantly spent among the dry bones of this animal world of curiosities. The
first thing which attracts the attention outside the museum is the skeleton of a
whale, ninety feet in length, which was caught a short distance from Melbourne,
at Port Philip. The huge monster became stranded on the beach and could not
get off, and the result was that its bones are now one of the curiosities of the
museum. Probably most of my readers have read of the Moa, the wonderful
bird which at one time belonged to New Zealand, but is now extinct. It has
been extinct for many years, for even the Maoris had never seen it. When New
Zealand emerged from the ocean, the moa came with it. Some writer has said
that " it was a bird that required a country by itself," and retired when smaller
animals appeared. Think of a bird fifteen feet in height! The large ostrich is
but a pigmy in comparison. It is wingless and tailless, with immense strong,
AROUND THE WORLD. " 51
heavy feet, and powerful legs. "Its bony skeleton is the best lecturer upon
natural history — ^more impressive than all lecturers that ever opened mouth and
labored away for hours to tell us what these dry bones say in their grand silent
language." While looking at the huge skeleton the words came into my mind,
" For there were giants in those days." The giants have passed away, belonged
to another age ; the mastodon, the moa, have had their day, have served their
purpose ; nothing remains to tell the story but the dry bones and eyeless
During my stay in Melbourne, the greatest land "boom" that has ever risen
in any country, has risen here — a veritable South Sea Bubble. Land has sold
for fabulous prices. On Collins Street several large blocks sold for $10,000 a
foot. One block, which cost $250 fifty years previous, was disposed of for
$2,500,000. At a distance of three and four miles from the heart of the city
land is selling at from $1,000 to $3,000 a foot.
M. Comellant, one of the Commissioners sent out from Paris to the Exhibi-
tion at Melbourne, was dining at the French Club. His health was proposed,
and, in returning thanks, he dwelt upon the pleasure he had received from his
visit to Melbourne and upon the apprehensions indulged in by his family when
he set out upon what appears to be such a formidable journey to most Parisians.
One excellent lady of his acquaintance remonstrated with him on the impropriety
of going so far from home at his time of life, as he might possibly lay his bones in
an Australian grave. " But," said the speaker, " I have since assuaged her
anxiety in that point, for 1 have apprised her by letter that land is so awfully dear
in Melbourne, that I could not afford to buy even so small an allotment as a
grave, and therefore I must return to France to die on the mere ground of
Some colossal fortunes have been made, notably by Sir W. J. Clarke,
Baronet, Sir James McBain, Mr. G. W. Taylor, Hon. M. H. Davies, Hon. C.
H. James, to all of whom I am indebted for kindness shown me.
^jIj^'^HE beautiful Flemington race-course is the scene of many an exciting
Y'I y race, and the great gala day is when the Melbourne Cup is being con-
-'^ tested. On that day all the wealth, fashion and beauty congregate at
the famous race-course. The grand stand, which accommodates 10,000 people, is
filled with handsomely dressed ladies. Cloak rooms, retiring rooms, etc., are
nicely fitted up for the accommodation of the people. At the last " Cup " race
there were about 150,000 persons present, and more than $1,000,000 changed
hands at the course. I had the pleasure of seeing one of the most exciting races
that had ever been run, when the beautiful little horse " Trident " won the Aus-
tralian Cup by about half a head, from his rival, " Nelson," both horses being
valued at nearly their weight in gold. At that race the owner ol " Trident " won
$30,000 in about /our minutes. After the race was over I went down to the
paddock, and it was a pleasure to see the slim-limbed, thorough-bred creature,
with nostrils red and quivering, and I thought of Kit Carson's ride and the
magnificent 'Pache. Even the most phlegmatic individual can not suppress an
exclamation and shout of enthusiasm during a race at the Flemington course.
The steeple-chase is the most exciting, for the jockeys often get terrible tumbles.
In the short space of four months six riders have been killed. In England,
during the steeple-race, the horses are not run full speed, but " take" the hurdles
quietly ; while in Australia the horse is not slowed down before taking the leap,
but jumps while going at full speed. One can imagine that the rider's chance of
escape is very small if a horse falls, which it frequently does. It is a sickening
sensation to see horse and rider go down, at the rate of speed in which they run.
One hears the exclamation of horror, and the question, " Is he killed .'' Is he
killed ? " and sees the involuntary shudder running through the whole assemblage.
The jockeys in Australia are not a " bad lot " by any means ; they, too, are a class
by themselves, and give to the Australians a great deal of pleasure and excite-
ment. The " bookies " are another distinct class, and any dishonesty on their
part disqualifies them for life ; any failing to pay their betting debts their license
is taken from them. The laws and rules of the turf are very stringent. At the
present time Lord Deerhurst — the Governor's Aide — is having some difficulty
with one of the " bookies," the noble lord having refused to pay a betting debt.
At the last race which I attended among those present were Sir H. B. Loch,
AROUND THE WORLD. 53
Lady Loch, Lord Carrington, Lord Deerhurst and Lord Sandhurst, allowing the
tuft-hunters and " toadies " — which, like other vermin, are to be found in all
countries — an opportunity to "grovel."
En passant, I will say that the dresses which are worn at the " Cup " are
put on exhibition in the window of a fashionable draper a week or two previous
to the race.
A number of women were sitting near me at the race, and I was much
amused at the comments they made, and their criticisms of costumes worn by
other women. " There is Mrs. . She always wears that dress to the races.
I have seen her here twice with that same dress. There is Miss . She
don't look well at all — falling off wonderfully. There is a dress ; see, it is per-
fectly horrible ; and there is Mrs. with a dress which looks just like one I
had made in Paris. But there is Lady ; she looks well ; so refined ; so lady-
like ; always looks well in anything." I pondered long over this latter-part of
the conversation, and wondered much whether that same garment put upon plain
Mrs., instead of Lady , would have looked so well in the eyes of these
There is a beautiful promenade in front of the grand stand, and after each
race, while the "books" are being made, the ladies take the opportunity of
showing their handsome toilettes. At the race in which " Trident " won, the
distance was two and a quarter miles in four minutes and tour seconds. All the
races here are run on the " turf," or greensward, the horses all being without
shoes while running.
If the literature of a country is an index to the character of its people, then
Australia must have a population of warm-hearted, frank and generous persons.
Although the country is young, it has produced more writers than Canada. One
writer's memory — that of Marcus -Clarke — is fresh in the minds of Australians,
and all feel a pride in his writings. He died poor — as most literary people do —
about five years since. His widow is living in Melbourne, and a charming woman
she is. After his death the Government gave her a position, which affords her
and her seven children a modest competence. The work which gave him his
reputation — " His Natural Life " — is a story of the early convict days in the
colony, a book which no one can read unmoved. It is said that the characters
were all taken from life, and by many people it is ranked with Dickens' best
efforts. For pathos it is unequalled, and reminds me forcibly of " Les Miserables,"
Victor Hugo's best work. The book sells well in England, and I think every
Australasian has read " For the Term of His Natural Life."
54 AROUND THE WORLD.
The writer's own life would be well worth writing, one in which tragedy and
comedy were strangely combined. Always poor, many times arrested for debt,
writing at his story late into the night, addicted to drinking, making friends easily,
he produced one of the saddest of all sad books.
B. L. Farjeon is an Australian. Many people have mistaken him for an
Englishman, but he is an Australian, born and bred. Several of his best stories
were written here, but, strange to say, they were not appreciated, so he went to
London, where his reputation was at once established, and where he is at present.
Nearly everyone has read his " Blade o' Grass," " Little Griff," and his London
story, "Great Porter House Square."
J. Kingston, whose letters appeared in the Arg^us, has written a most inter-
esting book called " The Australian Abroad." It is a book of travel, and unlike
many works of travels, is not dull. The writer gives an interesting sketch of
Egypt, India, the Holy Land, Java, New Zealand, and other countries. He is
at present travelling, and will no doubt write another soon.
Mr. Julian Thomas, who writes under the nom de plume of "The Vaga-
bond," to whom I have referred in an early part of my book, should be read by
all lovers of strange truths.
John Lang has written some clever books of early colonial days. A. F.
Morrison has written "Sketches in Russia," giving a description of that country.
There are other Australian writers, but I have mentioned a few of the best.
Among the poets are Kendell and Adam Lindsay Gordon. Many of my
readers will be familiar with Gordon's poems, which are worthy of more than a mere
passing mention. His wild, weird, strange style cannot fail to make an impres-
sion upon the mind. There is a tinge of sadness running through all his poems,
and there is an exquisite beauty in his alliteration —
"And sickly, smoky shadows through the sleepy sunlight swim."
The "shadows" gathered around him, and he was found in the heather near his
home with a bullet from his own rifle in his brain.
In America, when we speak of a squatter, the term applies to poor people
who are given a small piece of land, on which they drag out a miserable existence,
as a rule. In Australia the squatters are the wealthiest class of the community,
many of them having a bank account of half a million pounds sterling. It is to
this country that the impecunious earl or lord of England sends his still more
impecunious son to "gather in" the shekels and the daughter of the wealthy
AROUND THE WORLD. 55
During a season of drouth one squatter has lost as many as 80,000 sheep,
and the thing most desired is rain, as the lack of it means ruin, while a downpour
ensures a fortune, the prohts on an average station being — in a good year —
$50,000. Sheep raising is the most important industry in Australia, and the
country is rightly called " The Land of the Golden Fleece."
The first thing that strikes a traveller or stranger on arriving in Australia
is the peculiar names of towns and cities. Here are a few : Merricumbene,
Jillaga, Nerrigungah, Nadbilliga, Cadjangarry, Bullanamang, Murrumbucka,
Woolumla, Tingaringi, Wollonbilldy, Nurenmerenmong, and Coppacumbalong.
These names, although looking so formidable, are really soft-sounding and
Australians have a peculiar call by which they make themselves heard at a
great distance. The word used is "coo-ee." One hears it in the cities as well
as in the bush, and it strikes the ear in a peculiar manner when first hearing it.
A party of Australians were in London, and one of the ladies of the party, while
in the street, found she had lost her friends by some means in the. vast crowd.
For a time she was at a loss to know how to make herself heard, but suddenly
she gave the well known "coo-ee," and her friends, recognizing the familiar sound,
were soon at her side. But imagine the surprise of the London cockney on hearing
this strange call ! It originated with the aborigines, and can be heard at a much
greater distance than any other call.
Through the kindness of the Railway Commissioners, who gave me a free
pass, I have been enabled to visit all parts of the country. Railways trains in
Australia are the same as in England. There is the same system of guards,
guard's vans and compartments, comfortably cushioned, which seat about six
persons. Many people object to the English carriages, and dislike the idea of being
locked into one of these compartments, as in case of an accident there is no
possible way of getting out. Latterly in Australia the doors have been left
unlocked on some of the lines. On all trains there is a carriage or compartment
set apart for women who are travelling alone, but none of the carriages are
heated, and I have suffered more with the cold while travelling by rail in this
warm country, than ever in America, even when the thermometer registered 30°
below zero. All the employees are civil and obliging, an.swering questions that
are asked by helpless, incapable travellers, good naturedly assisting with bag-
gage, which, by the way, is not checked except for very long journeys. On short
distances, for instance, of a day's travel, your baggage is simply labelled with the
name of your destination. On arriving there you claim your baggage, but there is
56 AROUND THE WORLD.
nothing to prevent some one else claiming it and walking off with it, leaving you
hatless and shoeless. The railway authorities are not responsible for the loss of
any baggage, and it is with a feeling of uncertainty that one sees their baggage
put into the van, for you may never see it again. I think it must be one of the
pleasures of travelling for an Englishman and Australian to know they will have
a scramble for their boxes at the end of a journey. They must like it, or the
check system would be introduced. The Government owns all the railways in
the various colonies, in fact the Government owns and controls nearly all things
in Australia. On the sixth of June I gave a dramatic recital in Geelong, assisted
by Mr. Kirkwood Lee, a Canadian, the finest tenor singer in Australia, and Herr
Seide, pianist. It may be interesting to my readers to know that Herr Seide's
father made a tour through America with Madam Anna Bishop, and is now the
leader of the Melbourne " Leidertafel" — the leading musical society of the capital
of Victoria Geelong is a city of 30,000 inhabitants, and was an important place
years before the foundation of Melbourne, and was the headquarters from which
all the gold diggers set out in the early days, being fifty miles from Ballarat. In
1853-4 the fare from Geelong to Ballarat was forty-five dollars, the mode of
conveyance being a bullock team. At the present time a first-class railway ticket
costs five .shillings. To an American or Canadian the country in Australia looks
very strange and rather dreary. One misses the little hamlets and home-like
farm Houses, for in Australia nearly the entire population is centered in the cities
and towns, the whole country, with few exceptions, being immense sheep farms,
many of the wealthy squatters owning or leasing from the Government estates
ranging in area from ten to one hundred square miles. The tendency is the
same as in England, namely, for the wealthy class to acquire all the land. On
the eighth of June I gave a reading in Ararat, a place noted in early days as one
of the richest alluvial gold fields ever discovered in Australia, the population
at one time, consisting principally of miners, being estimated at eighty thousand.
I was pleased to learn that a Canadian, Mr. Kilborn, a son of Captain John
Kilborn, of Newboro, Leeds Co., Ontario, was for many years the post-master
and telegraph superintendent at Ararat. The scenery about this place is very
beautiful. Ballarat, a city of forty thousand, was to me the most interesting city in
all Australia It is surrounded by high hills of volcanic origin, and it is in this
place that many of the large nuggets of gold have been found. On all sides are
seen the mining shafts, the hills torn, and in many instances almost wholly cut
through. In the city is situated the celebrated " Band and Albion " mine, the
shafts and drives of which are one hundred and thirty-three miles in length.
-'■V — -fe:--..: ^4;
AROUND THE WORLD. . 57
Many of the mines are underneath the city, and one cannot help wondering what
would be the result of a good lively earthquake.
So far, I have said little about the people of Australia, feeling that it is a
delicate subject to write about the people of any country, but a book written upon
Australia with the characteristics of the people not mentioned, would not be unlike
Hamlet with Hamlet left out. Australia is not a cosmopolitan country, being
almost entirely made up of English people and their descendants. Unlike
America, with its French, German, Irish, Spanish and English population, each
nationality brmgmg some of its own characteristics, Australia is pre-eminently
English. The dislike of the Australian people to Americans is proverbial, and I
think about the lowest term they could apply to a person would be " Yankee."
They look upon Canada with a little more favor, it being a sister colony, but still
they regard us as aliens, and think us more French than English. That idea is
perhaps kept alive by the many writers who visit Canada, and write almost entirely
about the French portion of Canada, Quebec. Mr Julian Thomas, the descrip-
tive writer for the largest paper in Melbourne, in writing about Canada, dwells
largely upon the French elements, their manners and customs. He is a gentle-
man for whom I have friendship and esteem, one whose qualities I admire, but I
think in his sketch on Canada he is likely to give an erroneous idea to his readers,
giving the impression that Canada is almost entirely French.
Every author who writes about Australia — as he is anxious to sell his books
here — gives to the people and the country unqualified praise, describes the country
as the most beautiful in the world, and the people as having the power of Jove,
wisdom of Minerva, and the beauty of Apollo.
The over-weening self-esteem which is so apparent to strangers, is not sur-
prising when one reads a book such as the historian Froude has written. I refer
to his "Oceanica." He made a flying trip through Australia, then wrote his nicely
worded " Oceanica." He turned the rivers upside down, put mountains where
none existed, created beautiful scenery where there was only scrub, moved the
cities and towns at his pleasure ; but it did not matter as long as he gave the
Australians the flattery to which they had become accustomed, and which is like
sweet-smelling incense to their nostrils.
They have great love for a title. Any titled person visiting Australia — and
there are many — is at once "dished up" in the daily papers to an extent that is a
surprise to any one from America. One sees in a Canadian paper a " personal,"
" Lord is at the Queen's, -Rossin House, or Windsor," and that is the end.
But in Australia they do things differently. Every movement of the above-
58 AROUND THE WORLD.
mentioned lord would be chronicled — why he came, from whence he came, and
whither he is going. All that is rather tiresome reading. I was rather amused
at the remark of an English gentleman. He said to me, " There is no aristocracy
in America." I replied, " Yes, there is an aristocracy in America — the aristocracy
of brains — a society that is exclusive, one in which no titled noodle can enter
unless he has something to recommend him besides the accident of birth." I am
aware that there are people in the United States and Canada who make them-
selves ridiculous by their admiration for "a lord." There are shoddy people all
over the world, but I was speaking of the cultivated, intellectual portion of my
own country and the United States. I am frequently reminded of the young
Englishman who was in the United States, dining with a number of Americans.
He said : " I do not care for this country ; you have no gentry here." One of the
gentlemen asked : '' What are we to understand you mean by gentry ? " " Why
er — er — people who never do any work, er — and whose fathers never did any."
The gentleman replied, " O, yes, we have people like that in this country, but we
do not call them by that name. We call them tramps."
I have read articles in the Melbourne papers, written by English travellers,
in which great stress is laid upon the correct pronunciation of the English
language by Australians, and again I have been amused at the same papers giving
certain words and expressions as " Yankeeisms." The fact is that the Australians
speak the English language in a manner that is peculiar only to Australia. It is
neither an English nor American accent. For instance, I have heard a child ask,
" Did you see the powny ? " and have been puzzled to know what was meant.
The word pony is pronounced ^oze/«jj/, the word skate is skite, tail becomes tile,
gate '\s gite, lady is liday, etc. I could give thousands of illustrations, but these
few will enable my readers to see the very peculiar turns the English language
may take. I have an idea, one in which I am firmly established. It is that if
Australia were cut off from all communication with England and America, that in
a hundred years they would speak a language that would be unintelligible to
others, with no trace of the Anglo-Saxon tongue. In fact, they would evolve a
new language. The love of England is strong in their hearts — love of English
laws and customs. Even those who have never seen England speak of "home"
as lovingly as though they had but recently left an English home and fireside.
Many more members of the aristocracy visit Australia than Canada. Many of
them own large estates in Australia, and come out either on business or pleasure,
it being quite de rigdour for an English earl or lord to make a trip to the
AROUND THE WORLD. 59
I have mentioned the aristocracy of birth, and will now mention the aristocracy
of brains. Charles Dickens has two sons residing in Melbourne. Ellen Terry
has a brother in Sydney. Miss Braddon's brother resides in Launceston. Last
night's Herald records the death of a remarkable woman, who had lived in
Melbourne about five years. A sketch of her life is worth recording, for is it not
true that the aristocracy of brains is much rarer than that of birth? In 1882
there arrived in Melbourne a most remarkable woman, who, though a celebrity in
Europe and America, lived quietly in Melbourne without attracting the smallest
public attention. Her name was Hortense Heuze Hazard, and it is safe to say
that a more brilliantly accomplished woman never visited the colonies. A
sculptress, held by many European authorities, when in Rome, to be the greatest
living ; an authoress, having written much, both in prose and verse; and a linguist
whose knowledge of languages extended to French, German, Italian, English and
Russian, all of which she spoke fluently, and with the literature of which she had
an intimate acquaintance. The lady left, among other works from her own chisel,
three beautiful pieces of statuary, which have been exhibited in Rome, England
and America, and pronounced by the critics to be beyond all praise. One of them
is emblematical of " Peace." Another work, which has been pronounced one of
the finest pieces of modern sculpture, is " I am Left Alone." A bereaved mother
is depicted with her two little children ; the elder is gazing up at her grief-stricken
countenance, as if to ask the cause of her woe, while the little brother, too young
to be anything but selfish, is regardless of his mother's emotion, playing with a
bird he has caught. The posturing of the figures is almost life-like. The marble
from which this was wrought was obtained from a quarry which has been
exhausted, and has the peculiarity of giving a silvery, metallic ring. Among her
rare and valuable possessions were some magnificent paintings, some veritable
I must not forget to mention the brother of Lord Wolseley, who resides
near Melbourne on a large estate. A grandson of Robert Burns resides in New
I have spoken of the loyalty of the Australian people, but they have not
yet learned to distinguish between servility and loyalty. With them a king can
do no wrong. A queen, because she is a queen, is hedged in by Divinity. In
this I can not help making comparisons between Australians and Canadians.
There is in Canada a spirit of independence, a knowledge of power within itself,
which seems entirely lacking in Australia If a (question is raised in Canada, the
people feel quite competent to deal with it themselves, and the thing to be decided
6o AROUND THE WORLD.
is whether it is best for the country. Not so in Australia. The question is : Do
they do so in England .'' forgetting that what may be beneficial in England, may
not serve for Australia. Australia is a country with a magnificent future ; also a
country of " magnificent distances ;" but, until the people are more cosmopolitan
in their views, they will never become a great people.
One hears the term " larrikin " frequently used, a name given to the rough
element in Australia. All misdemeanor is attributed .to the "larrikins," but I
have seen more ill-breeding on Collins Street — the fashionable promenade —
among the well dressed women, more bad mannered women, than any place in the
world. The women of Australia are just at the dress stage. At the expiration
of another fifty years they may cultivate their minds. I must do the people
justice, and do not wish to speak harshly, but I think most travellers will agree
with me in my judgment of Australian women. The people are very musical ; in
fact, out-door sports and music occupy their time, to the exclusion of any higher
form of intellectual activity.
There is one thing that is particularly noticeable in Australia among the
working classes, in fact, among all classes. They " take their pleasures sadly."
There is an entire absence of anything like hilarity. They are not a laughter-
loving people. I have never, in Australia, seen a group of merry, laughing girls.
They seem to have taken up the burden of life early. I miss the sparkling eyes,
the bright manner, the happy girlish laughter, of Canadian girls. Even the
children are old men and women before they are out of pinafores. I am
reminded of the person, who in speaking of the celebrated Dr. Johnson, said he
would make all the little fishes talk like whales. In fact I have seen no children,
but many premature old men and women.
American children have the reputation all over the world of being precocious,
but they are at least fifty years behind the Australian children in precociousness.
One does not require to look long for the cause. The people are, as I have
before said, in the "dress" stage. The little girls are taught that to be well
dressed is the aim and object of their little lives. I see daily small girls with
bustles, pads, tornures, dress improvers, and all the paraphernalia of fashion.
Anything like a little girl I have yet to see. I am speaking of the native born
Australian child, not of the children of English people. My eyes have been
refreshed with the sight of a simply dressed, comfortable looking little English or
American girl, and I have gazed long and lovingly at them.
The prim, precise, self-complacent mites of humanity which one sees in
Australia are the product of artificial mothers, women who have not sufficient
yip^z — y
^ i .
to . — 1
t- . Li.
AROUND THE WORLD. 6i
self-culture and independence to dress, train, and educate their children differently
from the so-called "custom." All the world over the laws of "custom" are
held as sacred as the Decalogue by the Bourgeoisie.
It is a rare thing to meet with a lady who is possessed of business ability ;
but how much rarer to meet one who, by her capacity for business, has gained a
world-wide reputation. Miss Alice Cornwall, of Melbourne, has accomplished
what few men could have done, by going to England and successfully floating a
gold mine, the " Midas," making four hundred and eighty thousand dollars profit
for herself She is well known by her title of " Princess Midas." Miss Cornwall
went to England, and notwithstanding the disadvantages which a woman must
necessarily labor under, she, alone and unaided, floated this large company.
She was fully able to explain the workings of the mine, and teach the share-
holders many things of which they were wholly ignorant in regard to mining.
While in England she purchased a newspaper, " The Sunday Times," she
being the sole proprietor ; also the patent rights for the Australasian colonies of
a light called the " Schanschiefif Light," which she successfully floated in Mel-
bourne, making another large fortune. Having heard and read so much of Miss
Cornwall, I was desirous of seeing her, and naturally expected to meet rather an
elderly, masculine woman. Judge of my surprise when a young looking, hand-
some lady appeared, and after shaking hands cordially we seated ourselves, and
1 soon felt that I had known her for years. She converses in an easy, natural
manner — a woman with a cultivated mind, a woman who would not be content to
talk drivel to fashionable fools. In the course of our conversation I asked her if
she would be content to lead a conventional life with nothing more to interest
her than the average society woman. She answered me in her energetic manner :
" I am sure I should do something desperate." Her life is full and complete,
with plenty to occupy her time and mind, and I left her feeling that I had met a
" noble woman nobly planned."
Ij^^HE great event in Australia, the Cup Race, took place on the first day of
I y November. The day was beautifully fine, and an immense number
of people gathered at Flemington, the world-renowned race-course.
People of all classes, grades and positions jostled each other ; the titled gentle-
man and grocer, the Governor and pawnbroker, the artist and " bookie," the
author and jockey, the lady of rank and the green-grocer's wife, the fastidious
woman and the demi-monde. The handsome dresses of the women, the beautiful
lawn, the many colored habits of the jockeys, the magnificent thorough-bred
horses, all make a picture that Australians may well be proud of About 160,000
people were present, many Americans being among the number, and several titled
ladies and gentlemen from England. Among the distinguished Americans
present was Major Henry C. Dane, the celebrated lecturer, who was on a visit to
Australia, gathering information for his famous lectures. I had the pleasure of
meeting him several times during his stay in Melbourne, and a more genial person
it would be difficult to find. His descriptive powers are unsurpassed, and while
listening to his wonderful word-pictures of scenes in many lands, his strange,
weird experiences, this thought enters one's mind, " Now 1 understand why the
great gift of language was given to man."
On the lawn there was a constant moving to and fro, while the grand stand
was filled with people anxious to see the great race. At last the jockeys were
weighed, and mounting their horses, they rode out on to the course, Hales, the
famous jockey, riding " Cranbrook " ; " Silvermine," the beautiful little black
horse, being ridden by Alec Robinson; "Dunlop" carried Saunders, while
"Australian Peer" was ridden by the young jockey, Gorry. There were eighteen
horses started in the race, but I have given the names of the favorite riders only.
The race was 2^ miles, and after a little delay, they stood in a line, some of the
older horses standing like statues, waiting for the word "go," while the younger
horses moved uneasily. At last the word was given, and the many-colored line
started, every horse running at its full speed. There was scarcely a sound to be
heard from the immense crowd. In a short time some of the horses were seen to
gain a little ; then the excitement grew intense, amid cries of " ' Silvermine' is
ahead ! " " ' Australian Peer' will win ! " " See, ' Silvermine ' is still ahead ! " Then
another shout, and " Dunlop " is coming up, and then for a time these two
AROUND THE WORLD. 63
beautiful horses, "Silvermine" and " Dunlop," are running neck and neck. The
excitement has reached the climax. Neck to neck, shoulder to shoulder, every
muscle strained, the horses are nearing the winning post, when a shout goes up,
" ' Dunlop ' has won ! " Won the great race by half a head ! Distance, 2^ miles ;
time, 3 minutes, 28^ seconds — the fastest time ever made.
The magnificent " Silvermine," the most beautiful horse on the Australian
turf, has had a strange record. He was second in the Newmarket Handicap,
Caulfield Cup, Sydney Cup, and Melbourne Cup. On the 2nd of January, 1888,
during a race in Sydney, while the horses were coming into the straight, " Silver-
mine " fell, throwing his rider. Alec Robinson. They picked him up, but it was
found that his skull was fractured, and that night he died, while " Silvermine's "
back was broken, and he died two hours after the accident. Alec Robinson, the
winner of many classic races, and the gallant " Silvermine," will be no longer seen
on the Australian turf
Everything belonging to the plant and vegetable world seems to flourish
with almost' tropical luxuriance in Australia. J. A. Froude states in his " Oceania "
that the oats, barley, peas, beans and potatoes were produced in such luxuriance
in Ballarat that he could believe Herodotus' account of the crops grown on the
plains of Babylon. Unfortunately, it is not always the useful plant which grows
so luxuriantly. The water-cress, introduced into New Zealand some years ago,
has spread so rapidly as to choke up the rivers, involving a great outlay yearly
in keeping them sufficiently clear for navigable purposes. Some thirty years
ago a Scotch emigrant took with him to Australia a thistle in a flower pot. The
Scotch emigrants rejoiced greatly over the national plant, and a dinner was given
in honor of its arrival. Then it was carefully planted. It spread with such
rapidity that whole tracts of land are rendered useless, as it defies extirpation.
Again, a missionary and his wife took with them from England a plant of sweet
briar and planted it, with pardonable pride, in the garden of their Australian home.
It spread with amazing rapidity, and from a small plant it developed into a large
tree, and is equally as troublesome as the thisde. While speaking on this subject
it may not be amiss to mention the great rabbit pest. Many years ago some
people from England arrived in Australia, bringing with them a pair of rabbits.
If I were to tell my readers the amount of money which has been expended in
trying to clear the paddocks of these little animals, I am afraid they would accuse
64 AROUND THE WORLD.
me of romancing. Within the last five years $5,000,000 have been expended.
The Governments are building wire fences between the different colonies, the one
between South Australia and Victoria costing over $300,000. The Government
of New South Wales has offered $125,000 to any one who can successfully rid
that colony of the rabbit pest. M. Pasteur, the celebrated French scientist,
claims to have discovered in the microbes of the chicken cholera the means of
ridding the country of this great plague. His nephew is at present in New South
Wales making preparations for the experiment. One can not help thinking that
sentiment has been the foe of the colonist, but who would imagine the humble
sweet briar, Scotch thistle, and a pair of rabbits, could produce such havoc .'*
Thinking of these people bringing these things so many miles across the sea, I
am reminded of an affecting little scene which I witnessed in Sydney on the
arrival of a ship. An old Irish woman was standing on the dock watching the
ship come in, bringing her son from Ireland. After he landed he handed her an
odd-looking parcel. As soon as she saw it she reverently knelt down and kissed
it. It was a piece of sod from her native bog, a handful of Irish soil.
J STARTED in May to visit Queensland, the northern and more tropical
portion of Australia,' a distance of four days travel. The journey from
Melbourne to Sydney is by no means interesting. Allbury is on the border
of New South Wales, where we change cars, and the only thing which attracts the
eye is the beautiful waratah, the native flower of New South Wales. Arriving
in Sydney, the following day we take the coasting steamer " Gl. Langworth,"
wishing to make the journey up by water and back by rail. One takes an Australian
coasting steamer with a feeling of uncertainty as to whether one's destination will
ever be reached, or you will be landed on a rock in the Pacific. However,
we made the journey safely, with nothing more serious occurring than the usual
nial-de-mer. We passed within sight of the coast line all the way, and therein
lies the danger, as in case of a storm there is not sufficient sea-room, and
frequently vessels are wrecked on the dangerous coast. On the evening of the
third day at sea we entered the beautiful Brisbane river, with mangroves growing
on one side and graceful bamboo trees on the other. The foliage and
scenery on this river are very beautiful, and there are many little nooks that
would delight an artist. Nature seems to have planned this spot as a
surprise after the dullness of this gloomy, forbidding coast line. People were
rowing about the river in small row boats, hidden at times by a group of
mangrove trees, then suddenly appearing again from under the branches of the
Brisbane, the capital of Queensland, is a small city of ninety thousand, with
streets nicely laid out and a number of handsome buildings, among the finest
being the National Bank of Queensland ; the manager is Mr. W. H. Glenny,
whom many of my readers will know, as at one time he was in Canada in the
British North American Bank in Montreal. It was a pleasure meeting some one
in this far-off land who was acquainted with some of my Canadian friends. All
the public buildings in Brisbane are handsome, as in fact they are all over
Australia. While in every city and town in Australia there are handsome
botanical gardens, the most interesting one to me is in Brisbane. The trees are
more tropical ; on one side there is a group of tall cocoanut trees ; the strange
bottle tree of Java, oddly colored foliage the ever graceful bamboo, and
numberless handsome palm trees.
66 AROUND THE WORLD.
The museum is well worth visiting, as one sees many curiosities from the
southern seas, strange shells, beautiful coral, the implements used by the blacks
in early times, the war clubs, drums and spears used by the natives. In northern
Queensland there are more blacks than in any part of Australia. In Melbourne
one seldom sees a native ; they are rapidly dying off, but in Brisbane they are still
to be seen, and were, to me, one of the sights of the place. I had heard a great
deal about the blacks throwing the " boomerang," and always had a great
curiosity to witness it. In Brisbane my curiosity was gratified. Thinking that
people who told about the natives throwing the "boomerang" were "romancing,"
I was all the more struck with wonder when I saw it. The " boomerang " is a
piece of wood cut in half circular form, like a quarter moon, nothing more. The.
black who threw it for us was as dirty and unkempt as blacks usually are, but I
forgot the dirt and untidiness when I saw him throw this weapon. He took the
thing in his hand, poised himself, and threw it. It went whirling through the air
at a terrific pace, traversed a circle of about i,ooo feet ; turning in the air, it came
whirling round and round, and fell at his feet. He looked around with a smile,
again picked it up, once more sent it off whizzing and whirring through the air,
and again it came back to his feet. It looked almost like some supernatural
agency, and is one of the great feats of the blacks, as no white man has ever yet
learned to throw the "boomerang."
There are tropical fruits in abundance in Brisbane. I think the most
delicious pineapples in the world grow in Queensland ; bananas, date plums and
hundreds of fruits with which I was wholly unacquainted. My first experience
in eating guavas was in Brisbane. It is a fruit that looks like a small green
lemon, and I can assure my readers that a green lemon is much preferable to
guavas. However, people told me that it was an acquired taste. I have no
doubt of it, but it would take too long to acquire it ; life is too short. While I
was in Brisbane there was a great political contest between Sir Samuel Griffiths
and Sir Thomas Mcllwraith. Sir Samuel Griffiths is the Prime Minister of
Queensland. I had the pleasure of meeting him, and a more kindly, gentlemanly
person I have never met — one who cannot fail to be popular, and make many
friends, as he has all the geniality and savoir-faire of a man of the world. The
Hon. Mr. Dutton, Commissioner of Railways, kindly gave me a free pass, and I
was enabled to visit many places in Queensland. One could write a large book
on that colony alone, as it is particularly interesting — interesting to the traveller,
the geologist, the scientist, and the artist.
After remaining some time in Queensland, I started by rail for Melbourne,
AROUND THE WORLD. 67
wishing to make the journey overland in order to see the country. From Bris-
bane to Ipswich the road is rugged in the extreme. We pass through immense
cuttings and long tunnels, passing the coal mines from which Brisbane is supplied.
There is a gradual ascent from Brisbane to Toowoomba, the latter place being
2,400 feet above Brisbane, situated in the Darling Downs. We pass the opal
mines, from which so many beautiful opals are taken. These stones are seen in
great numbers in all the jewelry stores in Australia, and the mine segms inex-
haustible. The Queensland opals have a world-wide reputation. I have seen
large stones a foot in length and over, with a seam running the entire length, two
or three inches in breadth, of this lovely rainbow-hued stone. All the most
delicate tints are reflected, as though nature, in one of her generous moods, had
gathered together all her most beautiful colors in sea and sky, -and then having
melted together moonlight and the hues of the rainbow, had suddenly solidified
and imprisoned all in a transparent prison.
THE BIRTH OF THE OPAL.
" The Sunbeam loved the Moonbeam,
And followed her low and high ;
But the Moonbeam fled and hid her head —
She was so shy — so shy.
The Sunbeam wooed with passion.
Ah ! he was a lover bold,
And his heart was afire with mad desire
For the Moonbeam pale and cold.
She fled like a dream before him,
Her hair was a shining sheen ;
And, oh, that Fate would annihilate
The space that lay between.
Just as the Day lay panting
In the arms of the Twilight dim.
The Sunbeam caught the one he sought
And drew her close to him.
But out of his warm arms started.
And stirred by love's first shock,
She sprang afraid, like a trembling maid,
And hid in the niche of a rock.
68 AROUND THE WORLD.
And the Sunbeam followed and found her, *
And led her to love's own feast,
And they were wed on that rocky bed.
And the dying Day was their priest.
And, lo ! the beautiful Opal,
That rare and wondrous gem,
Where the Moon and Sun blend into one.
Is the child that was born to them."
I must not forget to mention, while speaking of Toowoomba, that it is near
this place that Mr. James Tyson lives, the wealthiest man in Australia. He is '
worth about $30,000,000, and is familiarly known as "Jimmy Tyson," a man
who has devoted his life to money-making. It is only latterly that he has ridden
first-class on either steamboat or train. There are no colleges founded by him,
no charitable institutions, no homes for the poor or sick. He is a man who will
die " unwept, unhonored and unsung." About 200 miles from Toowoomba we
come to Tenterfield, N.S.W., near which place are the diamond mines, and two
large gold and silver mines, called the Red Rock and White Rock. Along this
road the engine puffs and labors, going very slowly, at times scarcely moving up
the heavy grades and through the deep cuttings. Mountains, mountains, on
every side. Hills stretching away as far as the eye can see, valleys in which the
sunlight seldom falls, interminable gum trees, the foliage and grass dressed in a
sad green, as though in mourning for their isolation. No words can describe the
solemn grandeur of this landscape. Nothing' to brighten it ; no flowers, no bright
foliage ; but the solemn impressiveness and the lonely grandeur leaves a lasting
memory. The mountains are forbidding ; even the very trees seem to make a
protest against the invasion of their solitude. They stand like sentinels guarding
the treasure buried in the mountains.
After a time we come upon a little agricultural land, and see the home of
some wealthy squatter ; then again the hut of the poor man. Dr. Cameron Lees,
in writing of Australia, says there are no poor in this country. Let him take the
overland train from Brisbane to Melbourne, and see the miles of huts, and he
would write differently. Houses that do not look fit for human habitation ; one
that I noticed had no windows, but as the train passed slowly by, the door opened
and a group of children came out ; one, a little, flaxen-haired girl, came to look
with wonder at us. I could see her plainly — a lovely little thing with her blue
eyes and flaxen hair — and I could not help wondering if, in later life, she would
AROUND THE WORLD. 69
be ame to see any poetry in the rugged hills and strange landscape which
surrounded her. Occasionally a green parrot flitted among the trees, while the
laughing jackass, with its queer, quizzical face, added to the strangeness of the
scene. About four o'clock in the morning we came to the Hawksburn. River,
which we were obliged to cross on a ferry boat, then take a train on the other
side. An American firm have taken the contract to build a railway bridge across
the river, to cost $5,000,000.
About seven o'clock in the morning we approach the beautiful Paramatta
river, and an occasional orange grove is to be seen, giving color and variety to
the landscape. The orange groves of the Paramatta are worth going many miles
to see. It is n beautiful sight — the well kept orchards, the trees laden with their
golden fruit. About eight o'clock in the morning we arrive in Sydney. It is
Sunday, and after a rest we decide to visit the art gallery, which is open to the
public from ten a.m. to five p.m.
It was a great pleasure to see the people, mostly the working class, moving
quietly about, looking at the pictures. There was no noise, although the gallery
was filled ; no pushing, but all enjoying the privilege of looking at the valuable
works of art. Working men with their children, the father pointing out to the
little ones a picture which pleased him, and to listen to the remarks of the small
critics was very amusing. Melbourne, with all its wealth, universities, and
education, has not yet become sufficiently liberal minded to open its galleries
and museums to the public on Sundays.
^-^Ip;-^ AS MAN I A is about a day's sail from Melbourne. The population is
I Y about 137,000. The two cities, Launceston and Hobart, are nicely
^ laid out and beautifully situated. The Mount Bishoff tin mine is one
of the curiosities of the island, and the largest tin mine in the world. A friend
presented me with some beautiful specimens from this mine, which I shall value
highly as a souvenir of this southern land. One visits Tasmania with the
consciousness that it is the most southern land on the globe, that is, the only
habitable land. • One sees evidences of the early convict days on every hand.
While the convicts have nearly all passed away into the "great unknown," their
work remains a lasting monument of the early days of oppression and wrong.
There is a home for the old surviving convicts at Launceston, who are cared for
by the government. While in Launceston I called at this home to hear for
myself the story of a very celebrated convict, Charles Banfield. He is eighty-
nine years old, with as kindly a face as I ever looked upon — no trace of the
criminal, for in fact he had committed no crime. I was face to face with the man
who is well known to have been the character from whom Marcus Clarke drew
" Rufus Dawes," in that well-known book, " For the Term of His Natural
Life" — face to face with a man who had suffered probably more than any man
living at the present time. The thought of " Jean Valjein " came to my mind.
While the English people were sympathising with the Siberian prisoners, while
all the world was weeping over the wrongs of the slaves of the United States,
here in this fair land there were wrongs committed, and sufferings borne, that
would make even the angels weep, could they but know.
Charles Banfield was born in Bath, England. While in London, with a
number of young friends, one evening, he was guilty of some slight offence that
in these days would not be noticed, and horrible as it may appear, he was
transported for life, put into a convict ship and sent to Australia, and remained
in Sydney for a number of years, always with the hope of liberty, the one desire
in common with all mankind. In 1830 he made his escape, in company with
four others, and turned bush-ranger, making a rule not to injure any one, but to levy
supplies from the settlers. He was about seven months leading this life ; if
caught, it meant death. They were betrayed to the police by one of their own
party, and sentenced to be hanged, at Windsor, New South Wales. Six other
AROUND THE WORLD. 71
convicts were to suffer the same fate, the coffins all standing along in a row.
The first one hanged was a young man of seventeen, who fought for his life,
and disabled the hangman ; he paid the penalty, but so injured the hangman that
he was unable to proceed with the others, and Chas. Banfield was left 10 suffer
for many a long year. His sentence was commuted to imprisonment in the
chain gang at Norfolk Island for life. For ten long years he wore these chains,
dragging out his miserable life, every year an eternity — an eternity of woe.
His life at last became so unbearable that he determined to commit some
offence, in order that he might get hanged. He and some other prisoners
decided to fire a hay stack, but instead of the sentence of death, which he longed
for, he was given 300 lashes. The flesh on his back hung in shreds, and he
spat quantities of blood. During his stay on Norfolk Island he saw five men
lashed to death ; each had received .300 lashes. It was seldom that a prisoner
survived that fearful punishment, but poor Chas. Banfield, with his iron
constitution, bore this and many besides. At last the prisoners on the island
growing desperate, it was resolved to take possession of the island, but one of
the number was suspected of turning traitor, and it was determined to kill him ;
but Charles Banfield objected to this shedding of blood, and thus incurred the
displeasure of his fellow-prisoners, who that night stabbed the suspected man,
and in the morning they came forward and swore they saw Charles Banfield
commit the deed. He again received 300 lashes, which the doctor told the
commandant would kill him. The commandant ordered four flaggelators,
instead of one, to apply the lash, in order that they might strike hard. This
fiend in human shape had this carried into effect, and after lashing him until his
back was a mass of quivering flesh, the poor tortured fellow was taken to the
hospital, where he was obliged to remain for three years. At the expiration
of that time he was ordered to go to Sydney. He had worn the chains so long
on his ankles that the flesh had grown in a fold over the chains, and after
the weight was removed he could only walk with the greatest difficulty. He
had been so long accustomed to the weight that it was almost impossible to walk
without it. At last a glimmer of light began to dawn upon this man, and the
Governor hearing about him, went to Norfolk Island to make enquiries into his
case. There was nothing could be said against him except that he always tried
to get his liberty. The Governor had no power to release him, but he ordered
him to be sent to Sydney, in an institution, promising that at the expiration of
three years he should be set free. He went to Sydney and his time had nearly
expired, when the Governor was recalled to England. Charles Banfield was left
72 AROUND THE WORLD.
again without hope or friends, and was again sent back to Norfolk Island. Once
again the hope of liberty and escape seized him, and he took a small boat and
put out to sea in it, thinking the dangers of the sea less terrible than the
inhumanity of man. He was pursued and brought back, once more to suffer
terrible punishment. The convict system being abolished, he lives now in
Lord Roseberry, while on a visit to Australia a few years ago, took a deep
interest in Charles Banfield's history, went to visit him in Tasmania, then
examined all the records in Sydney to verify the truth of his story. After Lord
Roseberry returned to England he visited the birth place of Charles Banfield, and
discovered that he belonged to a good family, also a will bequeathing to different
members of the family portions of property, mentioning that nothing was left to
Charles Banfield, "as he had disgraced the family." He, the martyr oi the family,
who had suffered pains and tortures, not as the martyrs of old suffered for
religious convictions, but for some youthful folly, some slight offence ; suffered
these tortures that the law might be satisfied. Let us who pride ourselves upon
our charity, remembering we have been Christians for two thousand years, think
of Charles Banfield, and ask ourselves what we have done for humanity.
JN October I visited Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, and was much
pleased with the beauty of the place. The streets are broad and beautifully
kept, but in matters of street conveyance Melbourne is immeasurably
superior ; but, notwithstanding that, the city presents a nicer appearance than
Melbourne. To many people Adelaide appears '' Quakerish," but it does not
impress me in that way. The public buildings are splendidly built, especially the
Post Office and towered Town Hall, the Exchange, and numerous banks. Like
all Australian cities and towns, it possesses magnificent botanical gardens, which
alone make a visit to Adelaide agreeable. But, again, like all Australian cities, it
is miserably lighted. The city is not built upon the sea. Largs Bay is the
seaport. There is an excellent hotel at this place, with all modern improvements.
Glenelg is another fashionable resort, where the wealthy people from the city
spend the summer months.
About a day's ride by rail from Adelaide is the famous ostrich farm, where
there are about 500 ostriches, and the value of feathers exported yearly is about
$r 6,000. While pulling their feathers a little finesse is required. The old birds,
accustomed to being plucked, will stand quietly, but the younger ones object to
being denuded of their finery, and it is necessary to pull a small bag over their
heads, with an opening to admit air, when they will stand quietly while their
beautiful feathers are being plucked.
While in Adelaide I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Worshop, the author
of the " History of Adelaide ; " also Sir Edwin Smith, the popular mayor.
I have endeavored in writing this little work on Australia to avoid dull
statistics ; simply to write of the country as I saw it, and although one might fill
volumes of matter about this strange world, I have only lightly touched upon
what I considered the most interesting part of it. In writing of Australia one
requires a rugged pen, not a poetical one ; the gloomy mountains and melancholy
forests could only inspire sombre poetry. Dante's "Inferno" could well have
been written here.
"The Australian mountain forests are funereal, secret, stern. Their soli-
tude is desolation. They seem to stifle, in their black gorges, a story of
sullen despair. No tender sentiment is nourished in their shade. In other lands
the dying year is mourned, the falling leaves drop lightly on his bier. In the
74 AROUND THE WORLD.
Australian forests no leaves fall. The savage vi^inds shout among the rock clefts.
From the melancholy gums strips of white bark hang and rustle. The very
animal life of these frowning hills is either grotesque or ghostly. Great grey
kangaroos hop noiselessly over the coarse grass. Flights of white cockatoos
stream out, shrieking like evil souls. The sun suddenly sinks, and the mopokes
burst out into horrible peals of semi-human laughter. The natives aver that,
when night comes, from out the bottomless depth of some lagoon the Bunyip
rises, and, in form like a monstrous sea-calf, drags his loathsome length from out
the ooze. From a corner of the silent forest rises a dismal chant, and around a
fire dance natives painted like skeletons. All is fear-inspiring and gloomy. No
bright fancies are linked with the memories of the mountains. Hopeless explorers
have named them out of their sufferings — Mount Misery, Mount Dreadful, Mount
Despair. As when among sylvan scenes in places
' Made green with the running of rivers.
And gracious with temperate air,'
the soul is soothed and satisfied, so, placed before the frightful grandeur of these
barren hills, it drinks in their sentiment of defiant ferocity, and is steeped in
"Australia has rightly been named the Land of the Dawning. Wrapped in
the midst of an early morning, her history looms vague and gigantic. The lonely
horseman riding between the moonlight and the day sees vast shadows creeping
across the shelterless and silent plains, hears strange noises in the primeval forest
where flourishes a vegetation long dead in other lands, and feels, despite his for-
tune, that the trim utilitarian civilization which bred him shrinks into insignificance
beside the contemptuous grandeur of forest and ranges coeval with an age in
which European scientists have cradled his own race.
" There is a poem in every form of tree or flower, but the poetry which lives
in the trees and flowers of Australia differs from that of other countries.
Europe is the home of knightly song, of bright deeds and clear morning thought.
Asia sinks beneath the weighty recollections of her past magnificence, as the
Suttee sinks, jewel burdened, upon the corpse of dread grandeur, destructive even
in its death. America swiftly hurries on her way, rapid, glittering, insatiable even
as one of her own giant waterfalls. From the jungles of Africa, and the creeper-
tangled groves of the Islands of the South, arise, from the glowing hearts of a
thousand flowers, heavy and intoxicating odors — the Upas-poison which dwells
in barbaric sensuality. In Australia alone is to be found the grotesque, the weird.
AROUND THE WORLD. 75
the strange scribblings of nature learning how to write. Some see no beauty in
our trees without shade, our flowers without perfume, our birds who cannot sing,
and our beasts who have not yet learned to walk on all fours. But the dweller in
the wilderness acknowledges the subtle charm of this fantastic land of monstrosities.
He becomes familiar with the beauty of loneliness. Whispered to by the myriad
tongues of the wilderness, he learns the language of the barren and the uncouth,
and can read the hieroglyphs of haggard gum trees, blown into odd shapes,
distorted with fierce hot winds, or cramped with cold nights, when the Southern
Cross freezes in a cloudless sky of icy blue. The phantasmagoria of that wild
dreamland termed the Bush interprets itself, and the poet of our desolation begins
to comprehend why free Esau loved his heritage of desert sand better than all
the bountiful richness of Egypt."
END OF PART I.
JN October I took passage by the Orient steamer "Orizaba" for England,
intending to stop at Ceylon, Egypt, Jerusalem and Naples. I think no one
can contemplate a six weeks' voyage by sea with any degree of pleasure.
For one week it is very well, but before the expiration of six, nothing but dull
monotony remains. So monotonous does it become that even the most trivial
things are accepted by way of amusement — a shoal of whales creates enthusiasm ;
a passing steamer is hailed with delight. I do not find among my fellow-
passengers people of the same intellectual calibre as were on the " Mariposa "
from San Francisco to Australia. England is well represented, nearly the whole
passenger list being English, I being the only Canadian. There is the usual
material for romance. The lady who sits opposite me at table is going to
Calcutta to meet her affianced husband. He has served for her as faithfully as
Jacob served for Rachel, and I think her worth all the years of patient waiting,
for she is a charming woman. Mr. Storey, a son of the Royal Academician, is
among the passengers ; also Mr. Warde, one of the most celebrated dancers in
England, who is just returning to England from a two years' professional engage-
ment in Australia. Among the most charming people I have ever met is Mrs.
Kohn, an English lady ; a more delightful travelling companion it would be
impossible to find. Gay, bright, witty, well read, and accomplished, charming,
winning little Mrs. Kohn, I wonder if we shall ever meet again on this side the
great " river," or if, after "crossing over," we shall know each other there ?
The Indian Ocean, although calm so far during our voyage upon it, is not
always so placid, but is frequently disturbed by that most dangerous thing at sea,
a cyclone. The sailing vessels which are unfortunate enough to be caught in
these cyclones invariably go down ; but a large steamer can run from them,
therefore my fears are allayed. Our Sundays spent upon the Indian Ocean were
as dull as such days invariably are at sea. All amusements were put aside. We
had the usual Sunday service. People hear a great deal about the impressiveness
AROUND THE WORLD. j-j
of service at sea, but it is all imagination, as there is nothing solemn or impressive
about it, many of the male passengers smoking in the smoking-rooms and
children running about the decks.
Ceylon, the Pearl of the Sea, and entrance to the gates of Paradise, the
outer circle of wonderful India, the home of the occult sciences and Eastern
magnificence, of wonderful temples and magnificent tombs. India, whose air is
impregnated with the "wisdom of all the ages," lies just within our reach.
Ceylon at one time formed a part of the main land of India, but the action of the
waters through countless ages has washed it off, leaving a space of sixty miles
between it and the main land. In writing of India all one's ideas of time are
changed — a country which was in a high state of development, whose people
were in the highest state of intellectual culture when England and her people
were savages, when my German ancestors were barbarians ; a country whose
religious teachings— the religion of Buddah — were written 2,000 years before the
birth of Christ ; a country whose temples and tombs stand to-day, lasting
monuments of the refinement and culture of its people, more lasting than any
written history. The magnificent monument of the Tag Mahal, which occupied
in its erection 20,000 men, ior twenty years, is one of the world's greatest wonders.
It is built of the whitest of marble, every figure and statue chiseled with the
most marvellous skill, every spire and tower crowned with some wonderful
evidence of genius. The Tag Mahal and the Pyramids of Egypt will stand for
ages as the two greatest wonders of human skill and patience which the world
has to show.
We reached Ceylon after a voyage of two weeks. The sight of land is
always pleasant to the traveller, who for days has seen nothing but water on
every side, but the glimpse of such a place as Ceylon is especially attractive.
We arrived at Colombo on a very hot day — in fact, all days are hot in Ceylon.
The first impression of this eastern world is a strange one. As soon as the ship
was anchored, it was surrounded by boats filled with native men and boys, the
men with a small cloth tied about their loins, the boys clothed as nature clothed
them. It is astonishing how soon one becomes accustomed to the "nakedness of
the land," and how very soon one wishes to follow their example, as the intense
heat makes even the lightest clothing unbearable. One writer has said that
while in Colombo, he had a strong desire to " take off his skin and sit in his
bones." The population of Ceylon is nearly 3,000,000, including Europeans,
78 AROUND THE WORLD.
Moors, Malays, Tamils, Cingalese and others, with the religions of Mohammed,
Hindu, Buddhist and Christian, and naturally this strange medley makes a picture
that is to be found no place else. If an artist were to take all the shades of
brown, from vandyke to the lightest tint, he or she would be able to reproduce
all the colors of the skin of these strange people. There is no place in the world
where caste is so distinct as in India. The manner of dressing and wearing the
hair are the characteristics of the different castes. Our guide wore his hair in a
" Grecian " knot, at the back of his head, with a tortoise-shell comb in front. It
is difficult to distinguish the sex of these people, as what little clothing they wear
is worn in the same manner by men and women. I asked the guide why he
wore his hair in that manner. His reply was : " I Buddhist ; high class." We
engaged a native driver and native guide, the guide being able to speak a little
English ; the driver could speak nothing but Cingalese. After a preliminary
squabble between driver and guide, we started on our voyage of discovery, but I
forgot to mention that I thought myself extremely lucky in having got off the
ship intact. There was a struggle between the guides and boatmen as to which
should take us. Had the struggle been between themselves I should not
have cared, but unfortunately I was in the midst of it, and between the
screaming, gesticulating and babel of many tongues, my temper was rather sorely
tried. Had I been a man with a stout umbrella I should certainly have used it
over the heads of these people. At last we started after agreeing to pay five
rupees for fourteen miles. We drove along a beautiful road, with cocoanut trees,
cinnamon trees, and coffee plantations, while on both sides of the carriage there
were children running along with out-stretched hands begging for money. It is
a painful sight to see poverty when one is unable to relieve it, but it is by no
means unpleasant to see the little Cingalese boys and girls running after one. It
is simply amusing. One cannot bring up any harrowing scenes of ragged
distress, because these people have so little clothing to become ragged, and their
little black faces are as happy and radiant as the sun. There is none of the
plaintive whine which one hears from beggars elsewhere, but a cheery voice
bubbling with laughter. They look up with eyes twinkling with fun. " Good
lady, I poor boy " — -with a graceful twitch of the head. " Master, I very poor,"
with a most winning smile. If all beggars would follow their example, I am sure
their business would increase, as it requires a very hard heart to resist the happy
laugh and graceful Cingalese. We passed some beautiful bungalows and grounds,
occupied by Europeans. One — -the first of all — -is occupied by a wealthy native,
who sent his children to England to be educated.
AROUND THE WORLD. 79
We called at the Buddhist temple, where we saw the figure of Buddah, and
the god of Vishnu. The religion of Buddah is said to be Christianity without
Christ ; nothing can be more pure than the Buddhist precepts. The Hindoo
temple is also within our reach. We could have visited this by taking off our
shoes on entering, but as the least exerfion becomes oppressive in this climate,
we refuse to exert ourselves, even to see a Hindoo idol. All my readers have
seen in circuses the curious Hindoo cattle, which I never expected to see out-
side a circus tent, but in Ceylon they are harnessed to a cart, and are made to
draw heavy burdens. I saw hundreds of them thus harnessed and at work.
Nothing can exceed the novelty of a street scene in Colombo. In one carriage
we see a Cingalese gentleman of wealth and position, dressed in immaculate
white, with a native servant on the box, and another servant trotting by the
carriage. Then a pair of Hindoo cattle harnessed to a covered wagon, while
inside, perhaps, are four or five little naked children, with two or three grown people
wearing bright turbans and brilliant colored skirts. The people who wear this
turban are the most picturesque of all the motley crowd. The artistic manner of
wearing it, the picturesque and brilliant colors, form a picture long to be
remembered. Again, among the street conveyances are the jinrickshas drawn by
one of the natives. It is a two-wheeled carriage made to hold one person,
cushioned nicely, and the native who draws you is between two shafts. I wished
to try this novel method of travelling, and having heard of it, was prejudiced
against making a horse of a human being, but the feeling leaves one as soon as
one steps into the little carriage. It all seems part and parcel of the strange scene.
There was one thing which afforded me much pleasure during my stay in
Colombo, a pleasure not unmixed with pain. I called upon Araba Pasha, who,
as most of my readers know, was sent to Ceylon a prisoner by the British
Government, for endeavoring to free Egypt from British rule. His plans proved
futile, and the result of his failure was exile and imprisonment in a strange land.
I found him in a handsome bungalow, where he is free to go in and out as he
chooses, with native servants and every comfort, but his gilded cage is none the
less a prison. He is a magnificent looking man, with a commanding presence,
and dignified bearing. His face is very expressive, and one can imagine that he
would be easily aroused to enthusiasm, but he has no appearance of a fanatic, or
visionary. He received me kindly, and has a very good knowledge of the
English language ; therefore the visit was an interesting one to me. After a
little time I arose and he bowed me out with a courtly, dignified manner, leaving
the impression upon my mind that I had left the presence of an " uncrowned king."
8o AROUND THE WORLD.
One can find many interesting curiosities in Colombo, and were it not for
the importunities of the natives, it would be pleasant visiting these Oriental
bazars, but it is most annoying to have these people screaming in one's ears
continually. They will follow one around for an hour, gesticulating and screaming
broken English, and I can assure my readers that no American " Cheap Jack "
can compare with them for swindle and humbug. There are some beautiful
stones to be found in Ceylon — the "cat's eye," and numerous handsome gems.
The natives always make considerable money from the passengers on board the
ships, but many times the gems which the travellers buy are made in Birmingham
for about three pence each, and sold to the unwary traveller for three pounds.
Then again the purchaser may secure a genuine "cat's eye" for three pounds and
sell it in London for twenty, as one of my fellow-passengers did a few months
ago. The most curious thing to me was the Cingalese newspaper, which I
secured as a souvenir. The early history of Ceylon is obscure, but Cingalese
kings are recorded as having reigned 543 B. C. Ceylon is noted for its
elephants ; many of them are exported annually to Europe. There are a great
number of poisonous snakes, among them the dreaded cobra. One of the first
questions which I asked the guide was if he ever saw any snakes, but I did not
imagine that they were ever seen in the city ; yet some of the ship's passengers,
while driving to the museum, saw a large one basking in the sun, directly in the
One can see in the distance the celebrated mountain called Adam's Peak.
This is the sacred mountain, where it is said the foot-print of Buddah is seen at
the very summit. The legend is that Buddah stepped from this mountain over
to India, leaving this foot-print as he returned to the land of his birth. The
Buddhists have covered this place over with a jeweled covering, which they raise
for the traveller to see the indentation. The foot mark is six feet in length.
A man can lie down comfortably in it. If Buddah had a foot six feet in length,
one naturally concludes that he must have been a giant. The teachings of these
people are simple and pure, but, like all religions, superstitions have crept in, and
this foot-mark reverence is really no more absurd than many of our beliefs.
If one requires washing done in Ceylon or India, it will be taken and
returned in a few hours, but it is not wise to give fine muslins, or, as ladies say,
" fine things," as the method of washing is rather peculiar. It consists of
pounding the clothes with a club, or rubbing them on a stone, and all washing is
done in cold water, in the little lakes, or lagoons.
There are excellent hotels in Colombo — cool and airy. While taking one's
AROUND THE WORLD. 8i
meals there are two native servants engaged in swinging the punkahs overhead ;
by this means the air is always kept cool. The punkahs are in all the bungalows
of the wealthy people, and as servants can be had for a trifling sum, one can have
any amount of attendance.
As the ship steamed from the harbor the scene was most beautiful and long
to be remembered. The sacred mountain of Buddah was dimly outlined in the
distance, the beautiful palms and cinnamon trees formed a charming middle-
ground, while in the foreground, the natives, with their picturesque turbans and
graceful figures, gave the finishing touch to this exquisite scene. The ship
slowly steamed from the harbor, the people grew more indistinct, the palm trees
faded from sight, until at last there was only the sacred mountain, growing more
misty, until it faded from sight, and the Eastern world and all its mysteries
were hidden ; the veil had fallen, hiding from Western eyes its glories and
Ij^^HE rest at Ceylon seemed only to increase our discomfort. After
I Y leaving Ceylon we were in the Arabian Sea, with another long stretch
^ of water before us, and the heat increasing daily. The passengers were
trying to dispel the tedium by a dance on deck, and the usual games, but dancing
is not a success when one's blood seems boiling with heat. About six days out
from Ceylon we sight the Island of Sokotra, and very beautiful it looks. It is
about eighty miles long and twenty wide. There are about 5,000 blacks on it,
and one can but wonder how they live, as the heat must be stifling. The island
is mountainous, and soft, fleecy clouds are hanging over the cliffs, and at times
cover the tips, softening the rough outlines.
Our next stopping place is Aden, after being at sea three weeks, but the
place is so uninviting that none of the passengers feel inclined to visit it. It
presents a scene of the utmost desolation. It is, as most of my readers know, in
Arabia, is a garrison fortress and camp town, and boasts of a population of
40,000. When I think of the many beautiful places there are on this earth, I can
not help wondering why people live in this nasty, hot, dusty hole. Life is simply
a slow baking process ; in fact, the heat is so intense that the hair of the Arabs
is bleached to a yellow hue. Soon after the ship was anchored it was surrounded
by a crowd of Arabs, who offered to do anything for money ; the little boys
diving for coins, and two of them jumped from the taffrail of the ship into the
water. One tiny boy, whom I never expected to see again after such a leap,
came up smiling a few rods off". They offered for sale many pretty shells, and
skins of wild animals, and among other things some very handsome ostrich
feathers, which are sold for a few pennies. I thought of my lady friends, who
would revel in ostrich feathers, if by chance they should ever visit Aden ; but for
myself, I have seen all I require of " Araby, the blest " — quite sufficient to satisfy
me for the remainder of my days.
On the afternoon of the same day we passed "the fortress island of Perim,"
the key to the Red Sea. While looking at this island I am reminded of the old
adage that " everything is fair in love and war." At one time a French man-of-
war arrived at Aden, and the English garrison entertained the commander and
officers. While dining, the French commander took a little too much wine, and,
as usual in such cases, forgot his reticence, and informed the English officers that
AROUND THE WORLD. 83
his intentions were to take possession of the Island of Perim in the name of
France. His surprise may be imagined, for upon arriving at the island next
morning he saw the English flag floating in the breeze, advantage having been
taken of the information to dispatch a gun-boat in the night and plant the English
ND the Lord said unto Moses, stretch out thine hand over the sea,
t^ that the waters may come again upon the Egyptians, upon their
chariots, and upon their horsemen.
" And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to
his strength when the morning appeared, and the Egyptians fled against it, and
the Lord overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea.
" But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea ;
and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand and on their left.
" Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea ; his chosen
captains also are drowned in the Red Sea."
Soon after passing Perim we entered "Hell's Gate," or the "Gates of
Desolation." Nothing could be more appropriate than this name to the entrance
of the Red Sea. On our right was the Arabian shore, on our left the African
desert, both countries arid and desolate, but the culminating point of misery is
reached in this body of water. It is filled with wrecks of vessels which have
struck on its treacherous shoals ; its coral reefs are the resting place for the bones
of many passengers who have succumbed to the fearful heat. During the last
voyage of the " Orizaba " — the ship in which I made my journey — there were
eleven deaths in four days from "heat apoplexy." The months of June, July
and August are the most dangerous on the Red Sea, and should be avoided by
travellers, if possible. During my passage through there was a slight breeze, for
which we were thankful, but even with that boon the heat is almost unbearable.
We passed over the spot where it is said Pharaoh and his \;hariots were
swallowed in the sea ; passed Mount Sinai on our right, which is barely visible —
merely a faint outline. Suez is the entrance of the canal at one end and Port
Said the other. The Suez Canal, which cost $90,000,000, required no engineer-
ing skill, as it was simply a question of digging out the sand, and the labor is
still going on. They are constantly dredging and working, as the wash of the
ships which pass through causes the sand to loosen from the embankments. It
is an old saying that "There is nothing new under the sun." Even this canal,
the boast of modern times, is not new, for it is known to have been in existence
in the time of the Pharaohs, but the sands from the desert drifted and filled up
the old one, and it remained for modern hands and commercial enterprise to
AROUND THE WORLD. 85
re-open this famous waterway. The ships move very slowly through the canal,
therefore the traveller has an opportunity of seeing both sides, and the sight is a
strange one. As far as the eye can reach, for miles and miles, the sandy desert
stretches, with no trace of vegetation or even a green shrub. There were a
number of Arabs working with camels when I passed through. They were
widening the canal in places, and the boxes which held the sand were strapped on
the backs of the camels, the animals kneeling down to receive their burden.
These Arabs are so miserably poor that anything is acceptable to them. They
will run along the bank of the canal, following the ship for pennies thrown to
them, and swim out into the water for pieces of bread tossed to them from the
shiix I think these dusky Arabs must have been made of sand, have eaten sand,
and, after death, returned to sand. A Syrian woman came down to a well,
carrying a pitcher upon her head — one of those quaint pitchers that we see in
Eastern pictures, a veritable Rebecca at the well — and as nothing changes in the
East; these women and their descendants will continue to carry water in the same
way, in the same quaint vessels, for ages to come.
Port Said was our next stopping place, and has the reputation of being the
"wickedest place on earth," and I think the inhabitants keep up their unenviable
reputation to the best, or worst, of their ability. There is a population of about
12,000, from all parts of the world — the refuse, scum, and dregs of the earth.
It was Sunday when we arrived there, but Port Said recognizes no Sunday ; the
shops were all open, the markets doing a thriving trade, and a market scene in
this place is a strange sight, with stranger sounds, with its babel of many tongues.
Here I saw for the first time the veiled Egyptian women — a sight which filled
me with pity, and a longing to tear the absurd thing from their faces. The veil
is fastened just below the eyes, and that is the only part of the face which is
visible. I could not help thinking that they were stifling under that heavy veil,
for it is not the flimsy thing which ladies wear in other lands, but is thick, so as to
conceal the face entirely. Perhaps my pity was uncalled for, as I do not think it
more absurd than many of the fashionable garments worn by the devotees of
fashion elsewhere. One of the novelties of Port Said is a ride on a donkey,
and I quickly availed myself of the novel mode of travelling ; but I soon found
that the donkey and I were not of one mind — that we did not fully understand
each other. When I wished to turn to the right, he immediately showed a strong
inclination to go to the left ; he was also given to sudden stoppages, a habit which
nearly sent me over his head several times. The saddles used on these animals
have no pommels, but the ride is very enjoyable — till you fall off
86 AROUND THE WORLD.
I visited the Mohammedan Mosque, but was not allowed to enter without
first removing my shoes, as no person is allowed to step inside a mosque with
shoes on. I of course removed mine, and entered, and was rewarded by seeing
a devotee at his devotions. Thousands of believers in the Mohammedan faith
pass through Port Said yearly on their pilgrimage to Mecca, the birth-place of
Among the customs of the unchanging East is the one of the money changers,
who sit outside their doors on the pavement, as they have done since the time of
Solomon. It is only twelve hours' ride from Port Said to Jerusalem. I have
seen, dimly outlined against the horizon. Mount Sinai and Mount Horeb, while
here, within easy distance, lie Jerusalem, the River Jordan and peerless Damascus.
After leavmg Port Said there was nothing more of interest till we passed
through the beautiful Straits of Messina. Then, farther on, we passed the
Volcano of Stromboli, a huge rock rising from the sea ; then, in a short time, into
the beautiful Bay of Naples.
^\ THINK no place in the world appeals so strongly to the heart and mind
/| of the artist as Naples. At every turn the eye is delighted by some
^ new beauty and quaint scene. It has been said that the Neapolitans are
dirty. It is true they are dirty, but it is picturesque dirt. No where else in
the world are rags worn with such grace, for even the rags are beautifully colored.
One sees the richest hues in Naples — the sea, the sky, the tint of the buildings
mellowed by time, the picturesque dress of the people, all combine to make an
exquisite picture, one that once seen can never be forgotten. Naples has a
population of 600,000, and one cannot help wondering how they live, as they
seem to do nothing but group in numbers, and make pictures of themselves.
The streets are the most wonderful to be seen any place in the world. I do not
mean that the buildings are the most beautiful, but I mean to say that in no other
place are such beautiful sights to be seen.
We were a party of four who started on a tour of Italy, and the first thing
we did was to secure a guide, which we did without any trouble ; and there is not
the least difficulty in getting along if one will only beware of extras, the great
trouble with all continental hotels. I will only mention a few of the most
interesting places which I visited in Naples. Among the palaces was one of
especial interest, the palace of Princess Colonna, the daughter of Mr. Mackay, of
California, who repaired the fortunes of the impecunious prince of the house of
Colonna, and secured a title for herself. I saw the palace which Araba Pasha
occupied after his flight from Egypt into Naples, before the grand finale which
made him a prisoner at Ceylon. He caused some disturbance in Egypt and
sought safety in flight, choosing Italy as the place of refuge ; then returned again
to Egypt to renew hostilities, which all my readers are acquainted with, and will
end his days probably in exile. I drove through the Grotto of Posilipo, cut by
the old Romans nearly 2,000 years ago. I visited the Queen's Palace, where
there are many beautiful paintings ; one entire room is devoted to the portraits of the
Bourbon family. There are numerous beautiful tables of antique marble, in one
room a large table from the ruins of Pompeii, many cabinets of curiosities,
handsome statues and antique marble vases. In one room I saw the cradle of
the young prince, with satin linings and inlaid with precious stones, a magnifi-
cent resting place for the young prince ; but his pathway through life may be none
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the smoother, for in an unsettled country like Italy the adage, " uneasy lies the head
which wears a crown," is very applicable. There is one room which interested
me very much, that is the "porcelain" room. The whole wall is covered with
porcelain figures in relief. There are trees, flowers, fruits, fans, and monkeys
all mingled together in the strangest manner. The most beautiful room is the
ball-room. The walls are handsomely frescoed, the colors blending harmoniously.
There are magnificent pier glasses, and superb chandeliers. I could easily
conjure a brilliant scene, with the blaze of many lights, beautiful frescoes, the
mirrors reflecting the forms and features of the lovely Italian women. I drove along
the fashionable drive, where I saw elegant carriages and liveried servants, both
horses and equipments rivalling anything of the kind seen either in New York
or Paris. The drive in the evening was a delightful one, with the beautiful Bay
of Naples on one side, the picturesque city on the other. The moon hung like a
silver disk in the sky, and repeated itself in the blue water, while the lurid light
from Vesuvius shone through beneath the black cloud which hung like a pall over
it — the mountain of molten lava which has overflowed and buried two cities,
Herculaneum and Pompeii.
THE BURIED CITY OF POMPEII.
The drive from Naples to Pompeii occupies about two hours. We engaged
a driver and guide, starting early in the morning. During the whole way we
have Vesuvius in sight, at times belching forth columns of smoke, as if to prepare
us for the ruin it has wrought, and to remind the people that what it has pre-
viously done it may do again, that the beautiful city of Naples may at any time
be covered with ashes and lava. To give the people security, and for the
advancement of meteorological investigation, they have built an observatory at
the summit of the mountain, near the crater. By this means they are able to
note every tremor of the mighty mountain, to make known previously any
unusual convulsion. About ten years ago the needles indicated an eruption.
The people were warned that it would occur, but were also told that nothing
serious would happen to Naples. The eruption occurred, as was foretold, but no
one could fortell the horror of the people, the screams of the frightened women,
the panic-stricken men, the wild confusion. People rushed to the sea for safety,
but fortunately Naples and her people escaped uninjured, while an island in the
bay, about twenty miles distint, was destroyed. We drove by handsome
palaces and soldiers' barracks, the palaces dirty but picturesque, the people
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dirtier and more picturesque, with the blending of Greek and Oriental. There
is a Httle hotel just at the gates of Pompeii, where we took our luncheon, under
the shadow of Vesuvius ; then entered the silent city of the dead, and walked
along streets that were worn by wheels of the chariots which were driven through
Pompeii nearly two thousand years ago. As the destruction of Pompeii took
place nearly two thousand years ago, and the stones in the streets were worn into
ruts on both sides by the chariot wheels, what then must have been the age of
the city at the time of its destruction ? I stood near a marble fountain where
the marble had been worn into a hollow by hands resting upon its side. How
many generations must have passed, and how many hands rested upon this
fountain before the imprint was made upon solid marble } In this same fountain
there was a marble head from the mouth of which the water ran. One side of
the marble head is worn down almost flat by the people putting their mouths
down to drink from the fountain and pressing the face against the marble. Any- _
one can see at a glance the positions the people have taken while drinking, the
hand resting on the marble, and the face pressed against the side. How many
faces, young and old — how many lips, fresh and withered — have pressed against
the marble to make those impressions ? Traces of this buried city were
discovered first in 1689, but excavations were not commenced till 1721. Since
then the work has continued, and valuable discoveries are being made con-
stantly. There are miles of these streets and houses uncovered, the contents of
the houses showing the tastes and customs of the people, and we who boast of
modern improvements and Inventions, are making use of the same inventions to-
day that were used by the ancients. We boast of our refinement and luxuries,
but the ancients were more luxurious than we of the nineteenth century. One
has only to walk through the streets of Pompeii to become convinced of the
luxurious tastes of the ancients. There are magnificent marble columns,
beautiful frescoes, handsome tiles and bronzes. Every house had its beautiful
mosaic floor, every piece worked with skill and artistic taste. Elegant marble
tables, marble columns, handsome facades, all show elegance of taste and refine-
ment. The authorities have preserved everything which has been found during
the excavations. Some are in a building at Pompeii, while the greater number
are in the museum at Naples. Everything in a Roman house displayed artistic
taste. Among the many things which I saw was a splendid vase with four
handles, decorated with female busts and inlaid with silver ; table with bronze,
inlaid with silver, bronze baskets, etc. I only mention this one vase as being
especially beautiful, but there is an endless variety of them. Any one of them, in
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our day, would be considered a work of art. Beautiful baths in every house-
hold ; ornaments for doors and furniture ; numerous candelabra for lamps ; num-
bers of mathematical instruments (one is exactly like the instrument used by
modern sculptors); doctors' instruments ; one large gold lamp. Among the orna-
ments I saw numbers of gold rings, one with the bone of the finger, and the ring
on it, just as it was found, and many rings set with fine stones ; one magnificent
necklace with eight large pearls and nine emeralds, but I will not particularize
these now ; ear-rings, rings, chains, necklets innumerable, and stranger than all, a
bottle of rouge, the color as fresh as though it were put in the bottle yesterday.
The tickets for theatres were peculiar — ivory checks, and pigeons made out
of terra-cotta. These were for the upper row of seats, still called in Italy the
" pigeon loft." Among the checks and pigeons were found skulls and heads carved
out of ivory, and their use is unknown. I have a theory — and if I am wrong I hope
my readers will correct me — that these skulls or death heads represented xki^ free
tickets or dead-heads, as we call them in our time. I hope I am right, as it would
afford me much pleasure to have made even this slight discovery in connection
with so wonderful a place.
I saw the plaster casts of some of the bodies found, some of them showing that
their suffering had been very great ; some had fallen smothered by the fumes of
gas, while in the act of running away, others had tried to escape by the windows
and were burned by the hot ashes. In one place they came upon a skeleton ; and
it has been left just as it was found. They have put up a gate and locked it
securely, and one can look through and see the skeleton lying in its bed of lava.
I shall carry in my mind for many a day this ghastly remembrance of Pompeii. I
wandered away from my friends while looking through Pompeii ; the guide had
left me. The room I was in must have been occupied by people of wealth. The
paintings on the walls were as fresh as though but recently painted. There was
a fountain with mosaics on every side, and here again were the marks of many
hands. There was not a sound to be heard, and I never felt so utterly alone as
while standing in this silent room by the fountain which had so suddenly ceased
its play. I stood there as in a dream and tried to people this room, but the wind
arose while I stood, and began to moan and sigh through the marble columns,
like the wail of a lost soul, as if in protest at the intrusion. If these silent
streets could only speak, would they not tell of restless spirits and noiseless feet
in this city of the dead.
I BADE adieu to beautiful Naples and started on my way to Rome, a journey
which occupied about six hours. Nothing can be more unlike than these two
cities, as nothing can be more unromantic and unpoetical than modern Rome.
But it is not of modern Rome that 1 am writing, but of ancient Rome. Books
upon books have been written about its wonderful ruins, and people will continue
to write, and still the subject will not be exhausted, as it is simply inexhaustible.
It is interesting alike to the historian, the artist, the archaeologist and the ordinary
traveller. The first thing necessary was to secure a guide, and we were fortunate
in our choice of " Guiseppe Rulli." He had been studying the antiquities of Rome
in the Roman University for three years, and each year has taken the prize for his
superior knowledge of the subject. The first thing which my eye rested upon
was a column erected in Egypt 2,000 years before the birth of our Saviour, and
brought to Rome before the Christian era. I wandered through the ruins of the
palace of the mighty Ceesars ; stopped for a time before the church of Andrea
della Valle, built over the spot where the Senate met, where Julius Caesar fell,
when there was "none so poor as to do him reverence," near the statue of Pompey,
which " all the while ran blood ; " passed under the arch erected by Augustus
Caisar in honor of his sister. Octavia. This was destroyed by a fire, and was
restored by Septimus Severus and Caracalla in 203. I crossed the Tiber and
saw the ruins of the first bridge built over that river, 553 years before our Saviour's
birth, the bridge which Horatius so gallantly defended ; passed under the "Area
di Tito," erected to Titus, the son of Vespasian, for the conquest of Jerusalem ;
it was through this arch that he bore the golden candlestick taken from the
temple at Jerusalem. The tower of the golden house of Nero, upon which it is
said he stood and fiddled while Rome was burning, still stands grey and gloomy,
I drove along the celebrated Appian Way, which was constructed by Appius
Claudius Caecus, 312 years before the birth of our Saviour, many of the stones of
the ancient road way still lying there ; passed the small church where it is said
St. Peter met Christ. I visited the " Abbadia delle Tre Fontane," or Three
Fountains, which derives its name from the legend that on this spot St. Paul was
beheaded, and after the head was severed from the body it made three leaps, and
from each of these three spots a fountain started. Just as I was approaching
these fountains I had the pleasure of meeting Archbishop Fabre, of Montreal,
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who was at Rome on a visit to his Holiness the Pope. Before leaving, he told
me of the celebrated liqueur which was originated by a French Trappist from
Canada. This monk made the liqueur from the eucalyptus trees which were
brought from Australia to Rome in order to purify the air of the Campagna. I
drank some of this liqueur — drank to the memory of the dead monk, one of my
The next place of interest was the Catacombs. There were a number of
people visiting this place at the same time. We were each obliged to carry a
lighted taper, and the scene was a weird one as we descended into the earth, into
darkness that could almost be felt. These subterranean passages were used as
burial places by the early Christians and also as places of refuge from the Roman
pagans. Our way was through narrow, dark passages, and on either side there
are excavations where the bodies of the Christian martyrs have lain, and as we
walked slowly through, our lights seemed only to increase the darkness, and to
make it still more ghastly; at times we caught a glimpse of the bones mouldering
and crumbling — bones that had lain there for centuries, I was wishing myself
safely out when I heard a lady exclaim, " Such a horrid place ! Do let us get out."
I made some remark to her and her reply was, " I am a patriotic American and
my home is in Ohio." There is no place secure from the much-travelled
American, from the top of the Pyramid of Cheops to the interior of the Catacombs
On the Appian Way is seen the celebrated tomb of Caecilia Metella ; it is
circular and sixty-five feet in diameter. There is a handsome frieze adorned
with wreaths of flowers. In the interior was the beautiful sarcophagus which
was removed to the Farnese palace. Such monuments are not erected in the
nineteenth century to the memory of women, and surely there must be women
worthy of such monuments, or did the pagan Romans revere the memory of their
womankind more than the Christians of to-day ? I entered the church of " St.
Pietro in Vineoli," where stands the magnificent statue of Moses by Michael
Angelo, one of the most celebrated statues which exist. From there to the
wonderful temple of the Pantheon, the most splendid monument of antiquity in
Rome, erected by Agrippa twenty-seven years before our Saviour's birth. In
this magnificent temple are buried Caracci and the immortal Raphael. I paused
for a time before the ruins of the Roman Forum, before the temple of Saturn, which
was built 491 years before Christ. Then to the baths of Caracalla, begun in the
year 212 by Caracalla and finished by Alexander Severus. It requires only a
look at these wonderful ruins to understand the magnificence and splendor of
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the ancient Romans. These baths could accommodate 1600 bathers at once.
The heating apparatus and hot-air pipes have recently been discovered. Beautiful
statues have been found in these ruins, and there are immense rooms with
beautiful mosaic-tiled floors. There are policemen guarding these ruins, as the
beautiful mosaic floors prove a strong temptation to tourists, and no matter how
much one may condemn vandalism, few could resist the mosaics from the baths
The grand church of St Peter, with its lofty dome, magnificent columns and
wonderful ornamentation, is the admiration of the world — a church where the
genius of Michael Angelo and Raphael united, where architects, painters and
sculptors have used their greatest skill, till at last it stands a monument of great-
ness and one of the wonders of the world. The Vatican palace, the largest in
the world, was at one time a dwellix>g for the Popes, and is occupied at the
present time by Pope Leo XIII. Nearly all the rooms are show rooms, only a
small portion of the building being occupied by the Pope. There are about
11,000 halls, chapels, saloons and private apartments. After visiting the Sistine
chapel, made famous by its paintings by Raphael, its frescoes by Florentine
masters and wonderful work of Michael Angelo, I went to the stables to see the
carriages of the Pope ; one of them cost $20,000, but the present Pope has never
ridden in these carriages, nor does he go out of his apartments ; considering
himself a prisoner, he refuses to leave the Vatican. Truly a magnificent prison,
St. Peter's, the Vatican and the Sistine chapel !
The most wonderful of all the great ruins of ancient Rome stands, the
Colosseum, the largest amphitheatre in the world, completed by Titus eighty years
after the birth of our Saviour. The wonderful structure was oval, and the exterior
was composed of three stories of arches, and each story had eighty arches.
One hundred thousand people could be accommodated. The arena had two
entrances, and entrances for the gladiators and wild beasts. At the inauguration
there were 5,000 wild animals killed, and it is said that 6,000 Christians were
devoured by the animals during the hundred days of revelry and butchery. I
would like to be able to describe accurately these wonderful ruins, but I find it
impossible, and although only one third of the gigantic building remains, the ruins
are the most impressive of any in the world, I think It has passed through many
stages and been used for various purposes. From the " Roman holidays " of
gladiator combats, which were abolished in 405, the wild beast fights were
continued till the time of Theodoric the Great. It was used in the Middle Ages
by the Roman barons as a fortress. In 1332 the Roman nobility again introduced
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bull fights ; then after that period the magnificent building was used as a quarry.
In the fifteenth century they began removing the materials for the construction of
palaces, and when one learns that three palaces were constructed from the
Colosseum, then the idea of the original size begins to dawn upon one. Pope Pius
VII. and Leo XII. endeavored to preserve the ruins, and in order to do so
erected large buttresses. These interesting ruins have re-echoed the howls
of wild beasts, and groans of Christians who have died for their faith, and Roman
ladies have witnessed the sickening sights of gladiatorial combats. Near the
Colosseum there is an old fountain, where the gladiators used to wash their wounds
after their struggles with the wild beasts. This building has always been
symbolical of the greatness of Rome, and gave rise to this prophecy among the
pilgrims : " While stands the Colosseum, Rome shall stand ; when falls the
Colosseum, Rome shall fall ; and when Rome falls, with it shall fall the world."
I visited the palace of Colonna — relatives of the Prince Colonna who
married Miss Mackay. The palace is opened to the public certain days in the
week, and on the walls are hung many handsome pictures by Rubens, Van Dyck,
Tintoretto, Guido, Titian, and others.
I have said nothing about the miles, almost, of pictures to be seen in Rome —
pictures by the old masters ; and, notwithstanding their wonderful beauty, one
tires after a time of Madonnas and pictures of Virgins.
Among the most beautiful things in Rome is the Fontana di Trevi, or
Fountain of Trevi. It is erected against the Plazzo Poll. In the central niche
is the beautiful statue of Neptune, at the sides Health and Fertility. The
Romans say that anyone drinking of the water of Trevi will never forget Rome,
and the superstitious say that if a stranger throws a coin into the fountain before
leaving, and drinks of the water, he will surely return to Rome. I, wishing to
return some day to this city of ruins, threw a coin into the fountain and drank of
the water of Trevi.
FTER leaving Rome we took the train for Florence, a distance which
t^ occupied about seven hours, arriving in the evening, the river Arno
looking in the moonlight like a silver thread, giving one a fine
impression of the birthplace of the immortal Dante.
The beautiful Metropolitan Church is the first thing which strikes the eye
in Florence. Every part of this edifice has a history and an interesting one.
The foundation stone was laid in 1298. The exterior is covered with marbles of
different colors, and the crowning glory is the cupola. The beautiful stained
glass windows are the works of Bernardo de Vetri and other master hands. At
the back of the altar is a statue left unfinished by Michael Angelo. The
Battistero, built in the seventh century, is celebrated for its magnificent bronze
gate by Ghiberti, which Michael Angelo said was worthy of being the gate of
Paradise. The famous Medicean Chapel is one of the beauties of Florence, where
we see the tombs of the De Medicis and handsome monuments. But the most
interesting place in Florence is the Uffizi gallery. There is seen the Venus of
the Medicis, a Greek work, the Dancing Faun, one of the great works of the
ancients ; paintings by Raphael, Corregio, Caracci, and other great artists.
Among the remarkable houses which have been occupied by celebrated people is
the house of Dante ; the villa occupied by Michael Angelo ; Cellini's house ; the
house of Galileo, the house where Raphael resided, Andrea Del Sarto, and
stranger than all, the place where Americus Vespucius was born.
From Florence to Venice requires only a few hours ride by train, but when
one arrives in this place the utter strangeness of one's surroundings seems to place
one beyond the reach of all places and all things to which one has been
accustomed. This wonderful Venice, which at one time was the commercial
centre of the world, suffered by the discovery of America, but I think it must
owe much of its present prosperity to Americans, as they of all foreigners are
the most numerous in Venice, and are the owners of many of the old palaces
which were occupied at one time by the Venetian nobles. After leaving the
train we were taken to our hotel in a gondola, for there are no horses in Venice,
everything being carried by gondolas, and many people living there have never
seen a horse. So the strangeness of the scene was thrust upon us at the outset
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as we took our seats in the gondola, and started down the Grand Canal from
there into side streets, the gondola making sharp turns around corners with a
rapidity which is astonishing when one considers that it is propelled by one oar.
We passed Venetian ladies — probably out making afternoon calls — with their
private gondolas and gondoliers, the gondolier in many instances wearing the family
coat of arms on his sleeve ; thus instead of carriages with the coat of arms
emblazoned thereon, the Venetians have them upon their gondolas and gondo-
liers. We stopped at the " Hotel Monaco," Grand Canal, and from my window
I could look down directly into the water, and was awakened many times in the
night during my stay in Venice by the strange sound of the oar of the gondolas.
The Venetians have a saying "' One Venice, one sun, and one Piazza San
Marco." It is the correct thing for the people to go to the Lido to see the sun
rise, but I am satisfied to get all my information in regard to sunrises second
hand, as I much prefer to lie in bed and read the descriptions, or better still, hear
nothing about the subject, for who can describe or paint a sunrise .'' But the
Piazza San Marco, or St. Mark's Square, interested me very much. In one part of
the square is the celebrated clock tower. On the top of the tower, on each side
of a large bell, are two large bronze figures by Ambrogia dalle Ancore, in 1497,
the year of the discovery of America. The Campanile is the highest monument
in Venice, and the terrace underneath is ornamented with statues and bas-reliefs
and columns of Greek marble.
The Cathedral of St. Mark was commenced in the middle of the eleventh
century, and is celebrated for its Oriental marble works, its carvings, paintings
and bronzes. The Doges' palace is one of the most beautiful buildings in St.
Mark's Square, and Charles Dickens alludes to the beautiful arches in his
" Pictures from Italy." But of all the statues, architecture and marvellous works
of skill in this celebrated square, there was nothing which interested me so much
as the pigeons, or as they are called, the " Pigeons of St. Mark," for they are the
prot(^g^s of the city, and anyone found ill-treating or injuring them in any way is
fined or imprisoned, for it is believed by the credulous that the prosperity of
Venice depends upon these pigeons, that the fact of their being there is a sign
that the city will not be swallowed by the waters of the sea. Every day at two
o'clock their dinner bell is rung, the vesper bells being used for that purpose.
The moment the bells commence to ring the birds fly to this square, and it is said
that if the bell ringing is omitted the birds scream and flap their wings in a
peculiar manner. I saw a little girl feeding them ; the birds flocked about her in
thousands, lighting on her head and in her hands — a pretty picture for an artist.
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I always had a desire to see the " Bridge of Sighs," of which Lord Byron
says : —
" I stood in Venice on the Bridge of Sighs,
A palace and a prison on each hand."
But I was disappointed, as it requires a vivid imagination to invest this bridge
with ^Buch interest, although writers say it is the most celebrated bridge in the
world. It is true that there is a palace at one end and a prison at the other, and
the prisoners were led from the palace to the prison, but I think these lines of
Byron have invested it with too much importance. In the church of St. Marie
dei Frari is to be seen the tombs of Titian and Canova.
In going down the water streets of Venice we pass many celebrated palaces
which were once occupied by famous people. There is seen the house where
Tintoretto lived, the celebrated Fondaco dei Turchi, which has been admired by
Byron, Tasso and Petrarch ; the Palazzo Benyon, which was occupied by Byron,
Canova and Moore; the Mocinigo palace was occupied by Byron in i8i8,
where he wrote the first cantos of Don Juan; Petrarch's house, which was pre-
sented to him in 1362 ; the palace of Taglioni, the celebrated Italian danse24.se,
and many other noble palaces whose foundations have been washed for centuries
by the waters of the Adriatic.
" There is a glorious city in the sea :
The sea is in the broad, the narrow streets.
Ebbing and flowing ; and the salt sea-weed
Clings to the marble of her palaces.
No track of men, no footsteps to and fro
Lead to her gates. The path lies o'er the sea.
Invincible : and from the land we went
As to a floating city."
After leaving Venice our next destination was Milan, to see the world
renowned Cathedral. It is built in the form of a cross, and no tongue or pen
can describe its wondrous beauty — a structure that seems impossible to have
been built by human hands, so delicate does it appear. Its beautiful spires look
like frost, and as pure as snow, while the statues from their dizzy heights seem to
have been placed there by the spirits of the air, and if the souls of the departed
dead are permitted to revisit earth, surely no fitter spot could they find than
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among the spires and statues of Milan Cathedral. No one can look upon this
structure without being better for it ; no one can look upon it without for-
getting earth and all things earthly. I turn from it with regret, for never again
will I stand before any work of man so beautiful, so graceful, or so pure as this
wonderful poem in marble.
After leaving Milan, the next place of interest was Comoin Switzerland, the
lake about which poets have sung and novelists written. There we took the
train to cross the Alps, and passed through the St. Gothard's Tunnel, the place
which required such engineering skill. It is by no means a pleasant sensation to
feel that you are beneath a mountain, in utter darkness, on a train which is
performing some kind of evolutions on a spiral railway. While crossing the
Alps, many times, just as I caught a glimpse of some beautiful bit of scenery,
suddenly I found myself in darkness, for there are tunnels and tunnels, but the
greatest of all is the St. Gothard's, which requires twenty minutes to pass through.
When we started to cross the Alps, before we made the ascent, the valley
was green with grapes growing on the vines. We found ourselves plunged
into a tunnel, and when we emerged from it the valley was below us. We passed
little Swiss houses, another tunnel, and upon emerging again the little houses
were below us and we found the atmosphere colder ; another tunnel, then we
were in the region of snow, with pines growing on the mountain side. We had
left the grapes and green fields below, and upon looking down we could see the
mouth of the tunnel from which we had recently emerged, while the bridge we had
just crossed looked like a spider's web below. One more tunnel and we were on
the highest point, and the scenery was grand in the extreme. Mountain gorges
below us and bridges that seemed unable to bear the weight of a man, and it
seemed almost incredible that they had carried the weight of the heavy train. It
was extremely cold at the summit, but the greatest inconvenience from which I
suffered was deafness, through the air being so rarified. We plunged once again
into a tunnel, and after coming to the opening we could see the track above us
this time, and on and on through endless tunnels we gradually descended and
found ourselves on the other side of the Alps. On through Switzerland into
France, then on to the brilliant capital, Paris. I will not weary my readers with
any descriptions of Paris, as it is a threadbare subject ; but the Parisians collect-
ively are a constant source of wonder Their lives, which are always at Jiigh
pressure, seem to suggest the old saying, " A short life and a merry one," if the life
of a blazP, Parisian can be said to be merry. They are nothing if not sensational,
and while I was there the craze was Patti, and hysterical, emotional, extravagant
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Paris fairly outdid itself. The newspaper criticisms and eulogies were such as
could only be produced by the Parisian press.
From Paris we took the train to Calais, a distance of only a few hours' travel,
then crossed the English Channel in seventy minutes. This very narrow strip
of water sometimes proves much too wide in stormy weather and is the bete noire
of amateur sailors ; but when I was crossing, the Channel was in a gracious
mood ; consequently I escaped the usual mal de mer. From Dover we took the
train again for London, the time required being only ten hours from Paris to
I have listened to people speaking in terms of dismay of continental Sundays,
and often when the subject of opening an art gallery on Sunday has been
proposed, people have held up their hands in horror and exclaimed, " It would be
impossible. Just look at the Continent for an example. If we opened galleries,
the next thing we would have continental Sundays " I think if such people were
to spend some time on the Continent, they would change their minds in regard to
many things. I do not mean to say that the people of Italy, Switzerland and
France observe the Sunday as the Anglo-Saxon does, by sitting at home and
denying himself all pleasure ; but in my travels on the Continent I have heard no
noise, no disturbance, no drunkenness, in the streets on Sunday. I passed
through a little village in Italy one Sunday, and there were a number of the
village maidens and young men dancing on the green, but there was no noise.
The theatres are open in all the large cities, but there is no disturbance, and I did
not see one man intoxicated during my travels on the Continent. I am not advo-
cating theatres on Sunday, nor the opening of art galleries or libraries, as I believe
in everyone being miserable in their own way ; and if the Anglo-Saxon can get
his full amount of misery by making Sunday a day of penance, by all means let
him have it. What I wish to say is that continental people can enjoy their
Sunday rationally, without penance, without noise or drunkenness. In London
some of the authorities are working hard to have the museums and art galleries
opened on Sunday, so that the working man and his family may visit them. They
have succeeded in opening some of these places, and in time they will all be
ERE again I am going to spare my readers any description of London;
too many books have been written on the subject. Here is the usual
regulation route in London, which all writers take, but many of these
places did not interest me I went, like all the rest of the world, to Westminster
Abbey, and was told to notice particularly a certain portion of the floor, which
was six hundred years old or more; but after having seen a column which was
brought to Rome from Egypt, where it was erected two thousand years before the
birth of Christ, this marble floor in Westminster seemed very new. But I
believe my travels have not been of the regulation order, and London was no
exception to the rule, as I went to the places which were the most interesting to
me, and I hope my readers do not object to going with me to the East End to the
London slums. One Sunday afternoon I went, accompanied by a police officer,
to the poor part of this great city. Our way led us through that portion known
as Whitechapel, the scene of the horrible murders. Nothing can be more sur-
prising than the sudden change from the principal street, with its well-dressed
people, into this hive of poverty, misery and crime. Here, within sight of the
Bank of England, the Mansion House, and the Exchange, is this fearful poverty.
I walked through these narrow lanes, where there were thousands of men, women
and children ; men with brutal faces, made brutal by poverty and crime ; women
with scarcely a trace of woman left ; children— God help them ! — with nothing of
childhood about them. I went into what is called a lodging house, where, by
paying fourpence a day, a man may cook what little he can get, and if he can
get nothing to eat, he may sleep there. I went in just as they were taking their
meal — if it can be called such — and witnessed a sight which I shall not forget.
There were about four hundred men sitting around pine tables, each one eating
what he had been able to get for himself weak tea and dry bread ; in many
instances eating food which the petted lap dogs of my fashionable lady friends
would have refused. They resented our intrusion — and who can blame them ? —
some of them looking up like hunted wild beasts, others with the stolid look
which struggling with poverty so often brings. Two of them had lain their heads
down on the table and fallen asleep, the picture of weariness. Dt^unk, my readers
may exclaim. Perhaps they were, but none the less to be pitied, as they must
AROUND THE WORLD. loi
waken from this sleep or drunken stupor, to cold, hunger and misery. In another
alley I came across two women sitting alone, half clad, on the door step of a
vacant house, taking their solitary meal, and the look of misery on their faces will
haunt me many a day. On a few dry crusts and weak tea they were trying to
satisfy hunger, but the words seem a mockery, as if their hunger was ever
appeased ! — for here, in a land of plenty, are starving women and children, while
men have spent their lives in trying to alleviate the sufferings of these people,
still the misery remains. In one street some well-meaning ladies were hold-
ing a service in a lodging house, but to me it seemed worse than mockery. Pure
air, cleanliness, and food are the essential needs of these poor people, and none
of these do they get. Talk to a half starving child about the goodness of God !
See them look with white lips and hungry eyes into your face, while you repeat to
them the catechism or creed ! The people who do these things may be well
meaning, but they know nothing of human nature. Tell these poor starving chil-
dren the story of the crucifixion, and how will it affect them, for are they not
crucified every day by cold and hunger ? The crown of thorns which they wear
is on their head at their birth, and is composed of sorrow, shame, hunger, misery
and wretchedness !
He who has written so many kindly things of such people as these is resting
in Westminster Abbey. Before the grave of Charles Dickens I reverently
bowed. He took from such people his character of " Little Nell," and who does
not know of " Poor Joe " and his lonely life. There are many " Poor Joes " in the
London slums to-day.
I have seen the volcano-ridged mountains of the Sandwich Islands, the palms
and groves of Honolulu, the cocoanut-crowned hills of Samoa ; have visited the
home of the Maori, ascended the cone-shaped Mount Eden of New Zealand,
passed up the magnificent harbor of Sydney, seen the mines and cities of
Australia. Have seen the snow-capped hills of Tasmania, and watched the
Southern Cross recede from view while I sailed for that beautiful island of the
East, Ceylon, and rested for a time among the mystic, occult-loving people of
India. Have passed through the Red Sea, through which the children of Israel
walked unharmed, toward the land of the Pharaohs, and have stood on the
blistering sands of Egypt. Sailed through the waters of the Mediterranean to
the beautiful Bay of Naples. Have seen the soft skies of the art-loving, poetical
people of Italy, on to the mighty Alps and blue hills of Switzerland. Have
I02 AROUND THE WORLD.
visited the vine-clad hills of sunny France, and then stood upon the shores of
England. Leaving the old worlds, with their Eastern magnificence and Oriental
splendor, their palaces of art and halls of science, I turn my face toward the land
which for many months is ice-bound and covered with its mantle of snow, turn
once more to the land of my birth, Canada.
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